Essay fight against corruption


The Role of the Foreign Corrupt Practices Act and Other

It has affected the mind of people to a great extent and become so common that wrong people can play with the public life. Corruption is of different types which has been spread in every filed like education, sports, games, politics, etc. Corruptions are like theft, dishonesty, wastage of public property, wastage of time unnecessarily, exploitation, scams, scandals, malpractice of responsibilities, etc are the various types of corruption. It has made its roots in both developing and well developed countries. We need to remove corruption from our society and country in order to get real freedom from the slavery.

We all need to be loyal towards our responsibilities and strict for any type of greediness. Now-a-days, corruption is seen everywhere in the society just like an infectious disease. The great leaders of the India who have fought their whole life for removing corruption and other social issues completely from the society. It is the very shameful condition for us that even after losing various great lives, we are not able to understand our real responsibilities. Corruption has been spread in the common public lives, politics, central governments, state governments, businesses, industries, etc.

It has not left any field. Corruption is increasing day by day instead of decreasing or steadying because of the continuous increase in the appetite of people for money, power, position and luxury. We have forgotten the real responsibility of being a human just because of the money. We need to understand that money is not everything and it is not a stable thing. We cannot keep it forever to us, it can only give us greediness and corruption. We should give importance to the value based life and not money based life.

As we all know that corruption is very bad thing. It inhibits the individual growth as well as society and country growth and development. It is social evil which is playing humans body and mind socially, economically and intellectually. It is continuously making its roots so deeply because of the increasing human greediness towards money, power and position. According to the sources, it has been identified that India ranks three in the highly corrupted countries.

Corruption is highly spread in the field of civil service, politics, business and other illegal fields. India is a famous country for its democracy but it is corruption which disturbs its democratic system. Politicians are highly responsible for all type of corruption in the country. We chose our leaders by having lots of expectations to them to lead our country in the right direction. In the starting they make us lots of promises however, just after the voting they forget all that and involve in corruption. We are sure that our India would be corruption free a day when our political leaders would be free of greediness and use their power, money, status and position in right direction to lead the country, not their own luxury and personal wishes.

We should select very honest and trustworthy leaders to lead our India just like our earlier Indian leaders such as Lal Bahadur Shastri, Sardar Vallabh Bhai Patel, etc. Only such political leaders can reduce and finally end the corruption from India. Youths of the country should also need to be aware of all the reasons of corruption and get together to solve it in group. Increasing level of the corruption needs to take some heavy steps to get control over it. Corruption is the highly infectious social disease which has spread its roots to the mind of the bad people.


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No one take birth to do such type of bad activities in the society however some bad conditions of their life forced them to do so. Gradually they become habitual for all of these bad activities. However, people suffering from any problem, disease, etc should keep patience and trust on themselves and never do anything bad in life.

As, one negative step of anyone may harm the lives of many people. We are not a single entity on this earth, there are many like us, so we should think a little about others and live life happily and peacefully with positive thoughts. Now-a-days, lots of benefits are given by the government of India to the poor people on the basis of various rules and regulations to bring social awareness among common people as well as equality in the society.

However, poor people are not getting benefited of those advantages given by the government as many officers doing corruption secretly in between the channel before reaching to the poor people. They are doing corruption against law for just fulfilling their own pockets with money.

There are many causes of corruption in the society. Now-a-days political leaders are making interest oriented programmes and policies instead of nation oriented programmes and policies. There is increasing level of change in the value system in the human mind as well as decreasing ethical qualities of human being. The level of trust, faith and honesty is decreasing which gives rise to the corruption. Nevertheless, there is reason to think that clientelism is actually an early form of democratic participation.

In the United States and other countries, it was a way of mobilising poor voters and therefore encouraging them to participate in a democratic political system. It was suboptimal when compared to programmatic voting, yet provided a degree of accountability insofar as the politician still felt obligated to provide some benefits in return for political support.

In that respect, clientelism is quite different from a more destructive form of corruption in which a politician simply steals from the public treasury for the benefit of his or her family, without any obligation to provide a public service in return. The problem with clientelism is that it usually does not remain confined to a mechanism for getting out the vote, but morphs into misappropriation. A final conceptual distinction that needs to be made is between corruption and low state capacity. Yet they are very different: a squeaky-clean bureaucracy can still be incompetent or ineffective in doing its job, while corrupt ones can provide good services 2.

Beyond low levels of corruption, good governance requires state capacity — that is, the human, material and organisational resources necessary for governments to carry out their mandates effectively and efficiently. It is linked to the skills and knowledge of public officials and whether they are given sufficient autonomy and authority to carry out their tasks.

Corruption, of course, tends to undermine state capacity for example, by replacing qualified officials with political patronage appointees ; conversely, highly professional bureaucracies tend to be less subject to bribery and theft. Low levels of corruption and high state capacity therefore tend to be correlated around the world.

But getting to good governance is a much larger task than simply fighting corruption. The distinction between corruption and low state capacity allows us to better understand differences between the effects of corruption in countries around the world. On the other hand, China has a great deal of state capacity. In the government effectiveness category, it is in the 66th percentile, while Romania is in the 55th and Ghana is in the 44th World Bank This validates the common perception that the Chinese Government has a great deal of capacity to achieve the ends it sets, despite strong perceptions of pervasive corruption.

The first generation of anti-corruption measures taken in the mids by development finance institutions involved ambitious efforts to overhaul civil service systems along Weberian lines: incentivising officials by increasing wage dispersion and setting formal recruitment and promotion criteria. These measures had very little effect; the problem lay in the fact that corrupt governments were expected to police themselves and to implement bureaucratic systems developed over long periods in rich countries with very different histories. This has taken a variety of forms: cameras placed in classrooms to ensure that teachers show up for work; participatory budgeting where citizens are given a direct voice in budgeting decisions; and websites where citizens can report government officials taking bribes.

Since governments cannot be trusted to police themselves, civil society has often been enlisted in a watchdog role and mobilised to demand accountability. Mechanisms like anti-corruption commissions and special prosecutors have, if given enough autonomy, also shown some success in countries such as Indonesia and Romania. These later efforts, however, have also had uneven success see, for example, Kolstad and Wiig ; Mauro In particular, transparency initiatives by themselves do not guarantee changes in government behaviour.

For example, in countries where clientelism is organised along ethnic lines, co-ethnics are frequently tolerant of leaders who steal. Elsewhere, citizens may be outraged by news of corruption, but then have no clear way of holding individual politicians or bureaucrats accountable. In other cases, successes in punishing individual politicians are not sufficient to shift the normative framework in which virtually everyone in the political class expects to profit from office. Finally, anti-corruption campaigns may disrupt informal understandings and personal relationships that underpin investment and trade: without formal property rights and contract enforcement under a system of independent courts, the paradoxical short-term effect of prosecuting corrupt officials may be to deter new investment and thereby lower growth.

There is a single truth underlying the indifferent success of existing transparency and accountability measures to control corruption. The sources of corruption are deeply political. Without a political strategy for overcoming this problem, any given solution will fail. Corruption in its various forms — patronage, clientelism, rent-seeking and outright theft — all benefit existing stakeholders in the political system, who are generally very powerful players.

Lecturing them about good government or setting up formal systems designed to work in modern political systems will not affect their incentives and therefore will have little transformative effect. That is why transparency initiatives on their own often fail. Citizens may be outraged by news about corruption, but nothing will happen without collective-action mechanisms to bring about change. Outside pressure in the form of loan conditionality, technical assistance or moral pressure is almost never sufficient to do the job.

Anti- corruption commissions and special prosecutors who have had success in jailing corrupt officials have done so only because they receive strong grassroots political backing from citizens. The political nature of corruption and the necessarily political nature of the reform process can be illustrated by the experience of the United States in the 19th century as I describe in Fukuyama , chapters 9— American politics in that period was not too different from politics in contemporary developing democratic countries such as India, Brazil or Indonesia.

Beginning in the s, American states began extending the franchise to include all white males, vastly expanding the voter base and presenting politicians with the challenge of mobilising relatively poor and poorly educated voters. The solution, which appeared particularly after the presidential election that brought Andrew Jackson to power, was the creation of a vast clientelistic system.

Elected politicians appointed their supporters to positions in the bureaucracy or rewarded them with individual payoffs like Christmas turkeys or bottles of bourbon. This system, known as the spoils or patronage system, characterised American government for the next century, from the highest federal offices down to local postmasters in every American town or city. As with other clientelistic systems, patronage led to astonishing levels of corruption, particularly in cities such as New York, Boston and Chicago where machine politicians ruled for generations.

This system began to change only in the s as a consequence of economic development. New technologies like the railroads were transforming the country from a primarily agrarian society into an urban industrial one.

There were increasing demands from business leaders and from a newly emerging civil society for a different, more modern form of government that would prioritise merit and knowledge over political connections. Following the assassination of the newly elected President James A. Garfield in by a would-be office seeker, Congress was embarrassed into passing the Pendleton Act. It established a US Civil Service Commission for the first time and the principle that public officials should be chosen on the basis of merit.

Even so, expanding the number of classified i. Individual municipal political machines such as Tammany Hall in New York were not dismantled completely until the middle of the 20th century. The American experience highlights a number of features of both corruption and the reform of corrupt systems. First, the incentives that led to the creation of the clientelistic system were deeply political.

Politicians got into office via their ability to distribute patronage; they had no incentive to vote in favour of something like the Pendleton Act that would take away those privileges. The only reason it passed was a tragic exogenous event — the Garfield assassination — which mobilised public opinion in favour of a more modern governmental system. Second, reform of the system was similarly political.

The Progressive Era saw the emergence of a vast reform coalition made up of business leaders, urban reformers, farmers and ordinary citizens who were fed up with the existing patronage system. It also required a clear reform agenda pointing towards modern government, formulated by intellectuals such as Frank Goodnow, Dorman Eaton and Woodrow Wilson. Finally, reform was helped along by economic development.

Industrialisation in the US produced new social groups such as business leaders who needed efficient government services, a broad and better-educated middle class who could mobilise for reform, and a grassroots organisation of civil society groups. The American experience is suggestive of how progress in the fight against corruption may be waged in contemporary societies suffering from it.

Reform is always a political matter that will require formation of a broad coalition of groups opposed to an existing system of corrupt politicians. Grassroots activism in favour of reform may emerge spontaneously, but such sentiments will not be translated into real change until it receives good leadership and organisation.

Reform also has a socio-economic basis: economic growth often produces new classes and groups that want a different, more modern politics. America points to another feature of anti-corruption efforts. Control of corruption was very much bound up with efforts to increase state capacity. The period that saw the emergence of an industrial economy was also characterised by huge increases in levels of education — particularly higher education, which produced an entirely new class of professionals who worked for both private businesses and the government.

One of the first government agencies to be modernised in the late 19th century was the US Department of Agriculture, which benefited from a generation of professional agronomists trained in the numerous land-grant universities that sprang up around the United States. The latter, in turn, were the product of the far-sighted Morrill Act of that sought to increase agricultural productivity among other things through higher education. It would not have been possible to reform the old patronage-based bureaucracy without access to the human capital represented by this entire generation of university- educated officials.

Every important reform effort undertaken to create modern state bureaucracies — in Germany, Britain, France, Japan and elsewhere — was accompanied by parallel efforts to modernise the higher education system in ways that would benefit public administration. Today development finance institutions focus on helping to provide universal primary and secondary education to poor countries and have largely given up on supporting elite education.

The reasons for this are understandable, but do not correspond to the historical experience of state modernisation in countries that became rich in earlier eras. These general observations about historical efforts to build modern uncorrupt administrations suggest that the process will be an extended one, characterised by prolonged political struggle. Fortunately, having a modern bureaucracy is not a sine qua non of economic development.

No existing rich country had a squeaky-clean government in its early stages of economic growth — neither Britain, nor the United States in the 19th century, nor China today. Corruption and weak governance are obstacles to economic growth, but economic growth can happen also in poorly governed societies and will produce, over time, social conditions and resources that will make government reform more feasible. But it is also a realistic assessment derived from the historical record.

Eisenstadt, S. Cambridge: Cambridge University Press. Fukuyama, F. New York: Farrar, Straus and Giroux. Johnston, M. Syndromes of Corruption. Khan, M. Kolstad, I. World Development, 37 3 , pp. Mauro, P. Working Paper No. Piattoni, S. Scott, J. Comparative Political Corruption. World Bank. Worldwide Governance Indicators. Available online. Corruption does not happen everywhere, it is concentrated in pockets: in particular industries, in particular societies and in particular times.

Among industries, natural resource extraction and construction have long been seen as exceptionally prone to corruption. This is partly because projects in these sectors are idiosyncratic and difficult to scrutinise. Places where grand corruption is perceived to be flourishing are rare, but Afghanistan and Angola are examples of these extreme conditions. As to periods, Britain in the 18th century exemplified the behaviours that would now lead to a miserable ranking in corruption indices.

More pertinently, there is good reason to think that, globally, there has been an upsurge in corruption in recent decades. Reversing this upsurge calls for concerted effort. Alongside these pockets of high corruption, other industries, other societies and other times are virtually corruption-free. Denmark is currently seen as the least corrupt place in the world and many non-Western countries such as Botswana are also viewed as relatively untainted Transparency International In most societies, corruption is not normal: it is therefore potentially avoidable everywhere.

Corruption is concentrated in pockets because it depends upon common expectations of behaviour. Where corruption is the norm, getting rid of it poses a co-ordination problem: if I expect those around me to continue to be corrupt, why should I change my behaviour? Because of this, pockets of corruption have proved to be highly persistent: the same industries and the same societies remain corrupt for many years.

Similarly, honesty is persistent. In the first TI survey conducted in , Denmark was rated second globally. This persistence is not a matter of chance. Danes are born into an honest society and so inherit the expectation that they themselves will be trustworthy. Being trusted is a valuable asset: it makes many aspects of life much easier. In consequence, individual Danes have a strong incentive not to squander this valuable asset through behaving opportunistically.

Because people have rationally chosen to protect their reputation for honesty, the entire society has stayed honest. But change is possible. Until well into the 19th century, the British public sector was very corrupt. Positions were bought and sold and contracts were awarded in return for bribes. Crises such as military humiliation in the Crimean War helped to shock governments into change. Opportunities for corruption were curtailed: recruitment and promotion were opened to competitive examinations. A new purposive ethic was promoted and serving the nation became the pinnacle of social prestige and self-worth.

By the late 19th century, the British Civil Service had become honest and competent. This transformation was largely fortuitous rather than the result of a properly thought-through strategy. But its success reveals the key components of how change can be brought about. Societies do not have to wait for military humiliation and a moral revival: corruption can be tackled effectively. In Britain, two key things — closing off the major opportunities for corruption and making working for the public good more prestigious and satisfying than abusing office for private gain — happened together. These two approaches are jointly critical in breaking cultures of corruption.

Just as 19th-century Britain implemented both of them without international help, there is much that societies currently beset by corruption can do for themselves. However, the globalisation of business and social networks has created an important role for international action. Countries such as Britain can contribute to encouraging both internal and international initiatives. There is enormous scope for international actions that close off opportunities for corruption. Equally, there is much that can be done to make behaviours that promote the public good more prestigious and satisfying than those that sacrifice the public interest for private gain.

This is because corruption, like honesty, tends to persist. Corrupt behaviour is self-reinforcing, and breaking out of it is not easy. A co-ordinated push for international action thus makes national initiatives more likely to succeed and more worthwhile to attempt. It can help those societies that are still struggling with the problems that Britain faced in the 19th century.

Britain has already done much to make global corruption more difficult. The Government has led the way in dismantling this labyrinth of deceit: the true ownership of British companies must now be revealed in a public register, and British Overseas Territories and Crown Dependencies are also taking action to improve company transparency. Britain has rapidly changed from being part of the problem to being a pioneer of the solution, but quite evidently following the money is subject to a weakest-link problem.

Corrupt money will hide wherever it can, so it is vital that all the major legal and financial centres close the loopholes. There is scope to extend transparency beyond bank deposits to other major assets such as property. There is also considerable scope for those governments that adopt effective measures for following the money to require all companies that wish to do business with them to comply with these standards, providing global reach for national efforts. A second contribution has been to increase transparency in key sectors.

In North America and Europe, what began as voluntary revenue transparency is now evolving into a legal requirement. Meanwhile the EITI is becoming the established international standard-setting entity for the sector, extending voluntarism beyond simple revenue reporting to matters such as contracts. There is now an equivalent voluntary initiative for the construction sector and it warrants similar co-ordinated propulsion.

A third contribution has been to increase accountability: the Bribery Act greatly tightened the legal liability of companies and their employees for bribing their way into contracts. Clamping down on bribery is a classic instance of the free-rider problem: no government wants its own companies to be disadvantaged. The alternative to such co-operation is a race to the bottom that the businesses of no decently governed country can win.

There is, equally, plenty of scope for contributing to the complementary approach of making public good more prestigious and satisfying than the private gains generated by abuse of office. Take, for example, tax administration, which is fundamental to effective government. In many poor countries, tax administration is an epicentre of corruption. As a specific example, consider the administration of Value-Added Tax VAT , which is a means of revenue-raising encouraged globally by the International Monetary Fund IMF because it is less distorting than most other taxes. VAT has reduced revenue, because it expanded the options available to corrupt tax officials.

It works by firms initially paying tax on their gross sales, but then getting a rebate on the inputs they have purchased, so that they end up only paying tax on the value they have added to those inputs. But in a country that introduces a VAT, a corrupt tax official can now sell a firm phoney tax receipts on inputs, in addition to the standard extortion racket.

As a result, the rebate system ends up paying out more than the sales tax component of VAT is paying in. Clearly at the core of this phenomenon are norms of behaviour among tax officials, such that seizing opportunities for private gain is seen as both more prestigious and more satisfying than contributing to the public good of generating tax revenue and the public services it can finance.

How might Britain, and other countries in which VAT collection does not face such problems, help to change this perception?

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Social prestige and personal satisfaction are largely set within peer groups: most people want to be respected by those they see as their peers and they find satisfaction in adhering to group norms. Hence a practical way of changing the behaviour of corrupt officials is to alter the group of people they regard as their peers.

Currently, a corrupt tax official is likely to have two key networks in which they seek prestige: their extended family and fellow tax inspectors. Their family will honour them for helping relatives who lack opportunities to earn a large income: he or she becomes the patron of the family. Their fellow tax inspectors, subject to the same family pressures, may see corruption as reasonable. They may even regard honest behaviour as a threat to their own conduct and therefore disloyal.

A useful way of changing this state of affairs is to twin those tax administrations in which corruption is endemic with administrations in countries that are not corrupt. Twinning could involve regular secondments of staff in both directions and the potential for accreditation to international professional associations at various ranks. The purpose would not primarily be a transfer of technical skills, although that could clearly be a component, but rather a gradual transfer of attitudes and behaviours.

The new network exposes the official to the potential of a new identity as a member of a prestigious international peer group of modern tax officials, working to global, not local, standards. It exposes the official to a new narrative circulating in the network: that tax officials are vital for the provision of core public services. Exposure to these new attitudes creates a tension between the behaviour that would generate prestige and self-worth in the old networks and the behaviour that would generate prestige and self-worth in the new network.

Creating this tension is not the end of the story, but it is an essential step.

Corruption Essay

The other key step is to tackle the co-ordination problem: why should I change my behaviour, if nobody else is going to change theirs? For example, many governments have closed corrupt tax departments within their ministries of finance and replaced them with independent revenue authorities, a change that has usually been reasonably successful. An analogous way for international twinning to overcome the co-ordination problem is for all the staff in an entire unit to be exposed to the international network at the same time. Each official in the unit would then realise that their colleagues were facing the same tension between old and new networks and hence the same choice.

There are already a few examples of institutional twinning. Also, until a decade ago, governors of the Bank of England used to host an annual meeting for governors of African central banks. But the scope for twinning is vast, relative to what is, as yet, happening both in governments and in the wider society. Around the world, governments have similar structures. For example, virtually all governments in low-income countries have a ministry of transport, a ministry of health and a ministry of finance. OECD governments have been liaising with these ministries for half a century, but the entities that are linked to them are their aid agencies not their counterpart ministries.

Direct links with counterpart ministries have the potential for a very different form of relationship based on peer-group networks, rather than on money with conditions. An important example is the regulation of utilities such as electricity. Many governments of low-income countries are now establishing regulatory agencies, which is a vital step in attracting private finance for infrastructure. But the regulation of utilities faces intense pressures for corruption: the decisions of regulators affect both the profitability of companies and voter support for politicians.

In the OECD, regulatory agencies have been operating for two or three decades. The OECD has also built peer group networks that have evolved peer standards of independence, transparency and impartiality. New regulatory agencies would benefit from becoming part of this distinctive culture. Such specialised inter-government peer groups are indeed the core activity of the OECD. But membership of the OECD is confined to the governments of high-income countries.

This is designed to embed tax inspectors for OECD governments in the tax authorities of poor countries on secondment for several months: not to train but to work on the job. An obvious extension would be to make this a two-way exchange of staff.

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More seriously, while the OECD initiative is excellent it is a drop in the ocean. The restricted membership of the OECD limits its scope to forge global links and there is no other international institution with the remit to build peer- group links across government departments between rich countries and poor ones. Perhaps this role should become a core function of national aid agencies such as DFID, but it would benefit from a co-ordinated kick-start by several heads of government. Again, historically such links have largely been confined to development non-governmental organisations NGOs such as Oxfam, which channel donations to needs.

But an important part of tackling corruption is resetting the cultures of professions, including accountancy, law, medicine and teaching. For example, in many poor countries, it is socially acceptable for teachers not to show up for lessons. Twinning involving things like teacher exchanges between schools could help to shift these dysfunctional values. The global explosion of social media has made this far more feasible. The two approaches of closing off opportunities for corruption and reducing the prestige and satisfaction generated by corrupt behaviour reinforce each other.

As the difficulties and risks of corrupt behaviour rise, fewer people will behave corruptly. This directly reduces the esteem from being corrupt because it is no longer so normal. Similarly, as more people start to get their esteem from being honest, those who remain corrupt are easier to spot and so find themselves running bigger risks.

National actions against corruption complement international actions. One major way of squeezing out corruption is to remove obvious sources of rent-seeking such as rationed access to foreign exchange and the award of government contracts through secret negotiation rather than open bidding. Competition within rule-based markets is an important part of the system of checks and balances that constrain public officials from the abuse of office.

Another is to prosecute some prominent senior officials. For example, in Ghana, 20 judges were sacked in late for accepting bribes based on video evidence gathered by an investigative journalist BBC News Being based on independent evidence, such sackings cannot be misinterpreted as government attempts to crush political opposition. Further, as high-profile events, they generate common knowledge among officials that all other officials are reflecting on whether they should change their behaviour.

Not all corruption is directly financial. Electoral corruption is highly damaging. New research finds that, under normal conditions, governments that deliver good economic performance enhance their prospects of retaining office, but that the discipline of accountability breaks down when elections are not free and fair Collier and Hoeffler Twinning national electoral commissions with their international peers, along with twinning local and international election monitors, can help to raise standards of electoral conduct. An international initiative against corruption provides an opportunity for national actions and international actions to cohere.

As people recognise that the calculus of risks and rewards and the sources of prestige and satisfaction are changing both for themselves and their colleagues, previously entrenched patterns of behaviour could become unstable. Mass shifts in cultures of corruption do happen and it is possible to make them happen. Someone who is corrupt is described as being bobolu and people have deep disdain for such a person. In most of Africa though, there are few similar words of such powerful home-grown cultural resonance.

The idea of stealing communal goods was literally taboo. Generosity of heart, even to strangers, but especially to relatives no matter how distant , is a quality much admired by Africans generally. And in 18 of the 28 countries, the feeling was that their governments were doing badly in the fight against corruption.

The report said that, despite these disappointing findings, the bright spots across the continent were in Botswana, Burkina Faso, Lesotho and Senegal. Citizens in these countries were some of the most positive in the region when discussing corruption Transparency International and Afrobarometer In environments where corruption is systemic but lacks cultural resonance, creating a climate where social sanction can be applied against corrupt practices has been challenging.

The task therefore is two-fold: we need to embed a clear legal framework to deter and punish corruption, and we need to actually change the culture, so that the concept of corruption is both understood and recognised as anathema. The war against graft political corruption has reached the point where the shame and social sanctions directed against this kind of theft and thief need to be given greater prominence in the arsenal used to fight corruption.

This applies especially in developing countries where its consequences can be — and often are — deadly. As such, the whole approach to corruption needs to be re-examined: from local cultural assumptions and preconceptions to the legal conventions, constitutions, statutes and, especially, the prosecution-related instruments brought to bear on it at the national and global levels. Integral to this are the principles of legal authority and equality before the law.

The equality component is essential: the rule of law must be seen to apply equally to all citizens without fear or favour, regardless of race, creed or class. The following complementary but separate factors in a society are critical: culture, ethos, ethics and traditions, and legal processes and practices. Each derives its legitimacy from history and the traditional ways in which meaning is made. By their very nature, they are far more negotiable — existing as they do in a constant state of flux in a dynamic world. Our success depends on how effectively we bring and use them together in the fight against corruption.

We do this cognisant of the fact that grand corruption, when compared to the drug trade, human trafficking, terrorism finance and other global evils, is the most easily rationalisable major felonious activity on the planet. During the years to , corruption was at the centre of the global development agenda. In , Transparency International was founded. In the mid-to-late s, corruption was adopted as a key development issue by the multilateral and bilateral development institutions. The following decade saw the rise of the BRIC nations2 and rapid economic growth across much of the developing world, as well as globalisation and its associated technologies assisting the expansion of trade and commerce.

At the same time, the struggle against Islamic extremism captured the attention of policy makers in the international community. Alongside it, unfortunately, has also come a rapid growth in the scale and complexity of corruption. So much so, that anti-corruption work needs to be returned urgently to the heart of the global development agenda.

It needs to be part of the DNA of modern nation-states, multinational corporations, non-governmental organisations NGOs and even religious organisations and how they interact on the global stage. This urgency comes from the fact that graft has served to hollow out key governance institutions in some countries. This includes the defence and security sector and areas of social policy such as health and education, with dire consequences for the public services they are supposed to offer the poor, in particular.

The crippling impact of corruption on the delivery of these essential services has deepened economic inequalities, undermining faith in political processes, parties and politicians. In turn, this increases political volatility as politicians retreat to identity and personality politics with its complex web of non-negotiable irrationalities. It also feeds fundamentalism of all kinds — for example, ethnic, religious and sectarian.

This also does serious damage to the independence, legitimacy and integrity of the service sector — in particular, banks, law firms and auditing firms — and deepens the challenges corruption poses. The growth of the latter has been buoyed by the dramatic expansion and sophistication of the internet and an increasing variety of communication platforms. Although it can involve an individual or group of individuals, this sector forms itself into sophisticated entities. As I pointed out previously, businesses find corruption the easiest felonious activity to rationalise, especially in cross-cultural contexts.

For them, relationships are tradable products that can be leveraged for a profit and not a social currency that helps make trade and commerce flow more smoothly within the law. So how do we fight these piratical shadows? Corruption is defined as the abuse of vested authority for private gain. Leading global advocacy organisations such as ONE have even made efforts to quantify the cost of graft in lives McNair et al. As the recent FIFA scandal has demonstrated, unconstrained corruption also threatens valued cultural institutions and traditions that we all hold dear.

This means we are at a critical juncture. It calls for a renewed global partnership against corruption to match, and even exceed, the concentrated and successful advocacy that followed the fall of the Berlin Wall. The new push needs to identify, disrupt and delegitimise the global networks of corruption in money laundering; terrorism finance; drug, people and environmental trafficking; and other illicit activities. This requires new global partnerships that target the information-era entities and domiciles that these networks rely on. They may be offshore tax havens or low-compliance jurisdictions where the ever-expanding raft of international regulations aimed at dealing with graft and illicit flows have limited currency.

To be fully effective, however, this reinvigoration of the rule of law must go hand in hand with action to create a cultural climate in which the corrupt — the thieves — are shamed for what they do.


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Indeed, effecting change in the culture and traditions — which inform what is acceptable behaviour — is perhaps even more important in societies where legal institutions based on the Western model are nascent, or where their existence is being energetically contested, as it is in important parts of the developing world. The release by WikiLeaks of US diplomatic cables in was a controversial episode of unofficial transparency and a powerful interrupter to the global status quo regarding corruption in relations between nation-states.

It revealed the corrupt practices that ruling elites are capable of to the growing youth populations of regions such as the Middle East. The reverberations of this are still being felt. Across Latin America and in the developed world, revelations of inappropriate, corrupt and unethical behaviour by leaders — in both the private and corporate sectors — have created a level of criticism from the public that is unprecedented in some countries. Presidents have been forced to step down and others turned into lame ducks while still in office by dramatic mass expressions of discontent boosted by social media.

In this sense the change has already begun — untidily, noisily, chaotically and even bloodily — in many places. The outcome is uncertain. But, in the long term, it will be dramatically different from the status quo. In addition to institutions such as an International Anti- Corruption Court as a further step towards increasing transparency, strengthening enforcement and securing restitution, the tools of visa revocations, personalised financial sanctions and more harmonised extradition mechanisms could actually be cheaper and more effective in tackling corruption than prosecutions — which are always tortuous.

However, for these measures to enjoy legitimacy around the world, they must be applied, and be seen to apply, with equal force across the different regions of both the developed and developing world. To conclude, a successful international anti-corruption campaign requires co-operation on a global scale and specific legal measures that help transform attitudes towards corruption and the ability to prosecute the corrupt. Although it may take longer, embedding a culture of social sanction and censure for anyone found guilty of engaging in, facilitating or condoning corrupt activity, even to the extent that those holding office lose public trust, would support these measures.

They need to be seen as bobolu. They need to feel the social stigma when they attend family gatherings, visit the golf club or step into the supermarket — as much to set an example to others as to punish the individual, impressing on the whole community that corruption will not be tolerated. John has been involved in anti-corruption research, advisory work and activism in Kenya, Africa and the wider international community for 19 years. This includes work in civil society, media, government and the private sector. Cassin, R. Major limits will mostly come from the state.

In certain countries, public rules limit basic civil rights and will impede the development of civil society organizations. The lack of transparency of public operations and the limited access to critical information do not encourage the direct participation of citizens in the conduct of public affairs. Citizens may also impose limits. In certain countries, citizens are ignorant on information in regards to the costs of corruption and the existence of several avenues available to them for fighting corruption. Citizens do not always understand the realisable personal gains they can get by fighting corruption.

They therefore lack the motivation to be actively involved in eradicating the vice. Lack of resources can also be a limit. Most of the civil society organizations have inadequate information and technical capacities required for pro-active actions rendering them inefficient in their fight against corruption. Previously these organization have been addressing environmental issues and basic human rights until more recently when they devised ways of engaging themselves in the war against corruption. Some aspects of such legal framework may include the basic human rights and freedom among others.

Such freedom would enable people to come together and form non-governmental organizations that would facilitate the fight against corruption. Empowering or strengthening the capacities of civil society organisations means to:. Requirements for registering these non-governmental organisations should be reasonable and not bureaucratic. Government should support civil society by waiving taxations on them. Effectiveness of the civil society can be enhanced through access to information and knowledge Bertram, Adequate funds raised for the civil society will attract well-educated and highly motivated people.

This ensures that the capacity of civil society in combating corruption is not comprised. The local groups have teamed up with international organization like Transparency International, or TI to fight corruption.


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  6. TI is a worldwide movement which helps in the fight against corruption and its stakeholders are those that against corruption. It is a non-governmental and non profit. The civil society also gains more support in the area where there is great mobilization against corruption. The objective will be achieved through strengthening citizen support for the existing anti-corruption NGOs, and increase participation of other stake holders whose primary interest may not be necessarily the fight against corruption.

    Publishing surveys that show how prices of basic commodity rises due to corruption should be a powerful tool in mobilising the public. Talking about the general damages of corruption is not good enough. Many countries like Pakistan have undertaken public awareness campaigns at the national, provincial and district level through schools and universities. It has been logically argued that the fight against corruption could not be won without free media because of the role it plays in the whole process.

    The linkage between the media and fight against corruption is critical. Free media plays a significant role in the fight against corruption because it helps expose or uncover various hidden corrupt cases. Though most of the countries have a free media, many factors still impede the efforts made by the media in their role towards fighting corruption. These factors may include corruption among the media itself, state control over media among others factors that hamper the functioning of media. Media may also be inhibited in its role towards combating corruption by libel laws and intimidation.

    In some countries violence against journalists has resulted in strong self-censorship. Legal framework that guarantees freedom of expression forms the foundation of a vibrant media. Freedom of information laws differs in some respects from one country to another. Journalists practicing in Turkmenistan are prohibited by the state to publish comments that connote corruption. However, the head of the state is immune from this law. Government monopolies on printing and television signal transmissions continue in many countries, creating pressures for self-censorship. Media business is booming and can be a major industry but the partisan nature of the ownership structure continues to hamper its development and growth.

    An appropriate system of corporate governance within the media would ensure non-partisan participation by the media. Foreign media can help to create a highly competitive and diverse media culture. Some countries mostly from Europe have made great strides in ensuring free press. Freedom of the press is highest in countries with the lowest levels of administrative corruption.

    The fight against corruption is a multi-dimensional approach and it is evident that the civil society plays a significant role in the process. Statistics has it that there is no single agency that can win the bathe against corruption unless by partnering with other stakeholders.

    This has happened in many developing world. Since the Civil society acts as a watchdog to the government and also defends the public interest, there is dire need to accord it the due support in the fight against corruption. The civil society should therefore be involved in the enactment of the anti-corruption laws as much as possible and also in their enforcement. A well developed civil society will represent a wide variety of interests. Organizations with diverse organizational structures will view corruption from different perspectives which will bring together diverse view points to design a strategy and increase its chances of success.

    To ensure that the measures taken are not politically biased, there should be more political will based on a broad support from various sources in the civil society. A variety of interests ensures that the anti-corruption initiatives taken meet the public interest.

    Introduction

    The discussion clearly indicates that the civil society has an important role to play in the negotiation and in the implementation of government instruments against corruption. The contribution made by the civil society can never be underestimated.

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