Wednesday, November 30, 2011

Malaysia’s corruption score falls again

Malaysia’s Corruption Perception Index (CPI) score has worsened for the third year running, slipping to 4.3 this year from 4.4 in 2010, according to a Transparency International Malaysia (TI-M) report.

Malaysia’s country ranking also fell to 60 out of 183 countries from 56 out of 178 last year.

It remained the third-least corrupt nation in Asean after Singapore (9.2) and Brunei (5.2), with Thailand (3.4) and Indonesia (3.0) following in fourth and fifth places respectively.

Singapore also placed fifth in the overall country rankings and was the highest-ranked Asian nation this year.

“Singapore is way ahead and I would like to point out that Indonesia is improving very fast and may overtake us because Indonesia has shown some will,” said TI-M secretary-general Josie Fernandez (picture).

New Zealand (9.5), Denmark (9.4) and Finland (9.4) were ranked the least corrupt nations in the world, while Somalia (1.0), North Korea (1.0) and Myanmar (1.5) were the most corrupt.

Malaysia’s Corruption Barometer results were unchanged, with 40 per cent of the public saying graft levels have stayed the same over the past three years and would remain so for the next three.

The Corruption Barometer is a measure of the public perception of corruption.

Members of the public saw the police and political parties as the most corrupt institutions, with the police named as the most likely recipient of bribes in the past 12 months.

But the percentage of respondents who admitted to paying bribes in the past year has fallen to 1.2 per cent from nine per cent in 2010.

Forty-nine per cent also thought the government’s efforts to fight corruption were effective or very effective, up a touch from 48 per cent last year.

However, the number of respondents who felt Putrajaya’s battle against graft was ineffective or very ineffective rose five points to 25 per cent.

“This means the fence sitters have moved to see government’s efforts as ineffective,” said TI-M exco member Ngooi Chiu Ing.

Performance Management and Delivery Unit (Pemandu) corruption NKRA director D. Ravindran, present at the launch of report, said it was “clearly not very good news” that Malaysia was now further from its 4.9 CPI benchmark.

However, he said it was more a mixed result if seen holistically, pointing out that almost half the public still saw the government’s fight against corruption as effective.

He added the Pemandu would continue its efforts to clamp down on “grand corruption” and increase the successful prosecution of corruption by the national anti-graft agency.

“Some of these other things we are pursuing, we’ve not let it go, and hopefully we’ll see some success going forward,” Ravindran said.
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