News / Africa

Report Finds Endemic Corruption in Burundi, Uganda and Kenya

Kenyan Police second most corrupt institution in east Africa, falling just behind Burundi, says Transparency International survey

Michael Onyiego

Kenyan institutions are still among the most corrupt in East Africa, but the country is no longer in top place among five countries surveyed by Transparency International, a group that monitors corruption around the world.

The Transparency International survey says the Kenyan Police are the second most corrupt institution in east Africa, falling just behind the police forces of Burundi, the most corrupt country in East Africa, according to the East African Bribery Index 2010. The annual survey developed by Berlin-based Transparency International measures bribery levels in the private and public sectors in the region.

The latest ranking, released Thursday in Nairobi, shows Kenya has registered a slight improvement in the prevalence of corruption overall, dropping from first to third place behind Burundi and Uganda.

Nevertheless, the survey lists Kenya's Ministry of Defense, the Nairobi City Council and the country's judiciary among the top 10 most corrupt institutions in the region.

The study praised Kenya for enacting legislation, such as the Anti-Corruption and Economic Crimes Act and the Public Officers' Ethics Act, to fight corruption, but found that the country had made relatively little progress in eliminating bribery from daily life.

Kenya has a long history of corruption in the public sector. In the early 1990s, many prominent politicians, including then President Daniel Moi, were implicated in the Goldenberg Scandal, in which the Kenyan government paid over $600 million for non-existent gold and diamond exports.

In 2009, stores of maize from the country's strategic grain reserve were sold to local millers in order to combat rising prices and low supply. Much of the grain, meant for Kenyan markets,  was then sold outside the country to avoid local price controls.

The East African Bribery Index found that in Burundi and Uganda, citizens pay bribes in around one-third of their public sector interactions.

The deputy executive director of Transparency International-Kenya, Lisa Karanja, told reporters that corruption could do real damage to the newly integrating East African Community.

"Exactly three weeks ago, the protocol came into effect amidst excitement and high expectations among the citizens of the East African Community," says Karanja. "Corruption threatens to hold back the attainment of the objectives set out by member states. The release of the bribery index is not an occasion for empty activism, but an opportunity to identify loopholes in public institutions that provide fertile ground for corruption and other malpractices."

The Common Market Protocol of the East African Community, which took effect on July 1st, allows citizens of the East Africa Community to live, work and travel freely within the region. The Community hopes to tap into combined economic potential of member states Rwanda, Burundi, Kenya, Tanzania and Uganda.

Though the East African bribery index paints a negative picture of the prospects for a smooth integration, not all of the countries scored poorly.

The report found bribery and corruption in Rwanda to be extremely low. Only 1.7 percent of more than 4,000 respondents were faced with bribery, and less than one percent actually paid, a figure which the report called "negligible."

According to Transparency International-Kenya, a comparative study of Rwanda's public sector could provide a detailed path to the elimination of corruption in the region.

You May Like

EU Court Fines Poland for Hosting CIA 'Black Sites'

Ruling is first time a court has acknowledged suspects were held and tortured at the sites, under US program launched following the 9/11 terrorist attacks More

Migrant Issues Close to Home Spur Groups to Take Action

Groups placing water, food in the desert, or aiding detainees after release, have one common goal: no more deaths of migrants crossing illegally into the US More

Video At AIDS Conference, Prevention Pill Stirs Excitement

Truveda shows promise, spurring debate over access and other approaches More

This forum has been closed.
Comments
     
There are no comments in this forum. Be first and add one

Featured Videos

Your JavaScript is turned off or you have an old version of Adobe's Flash Player. Get the latest Flash player.
Treatment for Childhood Epilepsy Heats up Medical Marijuana Debatei
X
Shelley Schlender
July 24, 2014 6:43 PM
In the United States, marijuana is classed as an illegal drug by the federal government. But nearly half the states have legalized it, to some degree. Proponents say some strains of marijuana might have exceptional health benefits, for treating pain or inflammation in chronic conditions such as cancer, multiple sclerosis and epilepsy. Shelley Schlender reports on a strain of medical marijuana developed in Colorado that is reputed to reduce seizures in childhood epilepsy
Video

Video Treatment for Childhood Epilepsy Heats up Medical Marijuana Debate

In the United States, marijuana is classed as an illegal drug by the federal government. But nearly half the states have legalized it, to some degree. Proponents say some strains of marijuana might have exceptional health benefits, for treating pain or inflammation in chronic conditions such as cancer, multiple sclerosis and epilepsy. Shelley Schlender reports on a strain of medical marijuana developed in Colorado that is reputed to reduce seizures in childhood epilepsy
Video

Video Airbus Adds Metal 3D Printed Parts to New Jets

By the end of this year, European aircraft manufacturing consortium Airbus plans to deliver the first of its new, extra-wide-body passenger jets, the A350-XWB. Among other technological innovations, the new plane will also incorporate metal parts made in a 3-D printer. VOA's George Putic has more.
Video

Video Death Toll From Israel-Gaza Conflict Surpasses 700

Gaza officials say a shelling hit a compound housing a United Nations-run school in the Gaza Strip, killing more than a dozen people, during an Israeli offensive in the area. Heavy fighting between the Israeli military and Hamas militants continued on Thursday, pushing up the death toll. So far, more than 730 Palestinians and 35 Israelis have been killed in the conflict. VOA's Scott Bobb has the latest from Jerusalem.
Video

Video AIDS Conference Welcomes Exciting Developments in HIV Treatment, Prevention

Significant strides have been made in recent years toward the treatment and prevention of HIV, the virus that causes AIDS. This year, at the International AIDS Conference, the AIDS community welcomed progress on a new pill that may prevent transmission of the deadly virus. VOA’s Anita Powell reports from Melbourne, Australia.
Video

Video Israel Targets Gaza Supply Tunnels

The Israeli military has launched a ground operation in Gaza to destroy the myriad tunnels that may have been used to smuggle weapons to Hamas. VOA's Zlatica Hoke reports that could mean more hardship for the people of Gaza, who obtain some of their essential supplies through these underground passages
Video

Video Researchers Target Low-Cost Avatar Technology

Scientists at the University of Southern California Institute for Creative Technologies say 3-dimensional representations could revolutionize social media. Elizabeth Lee has more from Los Angeles.
Video

Video IAEA: Iran Turns its Enriched Uranium Into Less Harmful Form

Iran has converted its stockpiles of enriched uranium into a less dangerous form that is more difficult to use for nuclear weapons, according to the United Nations’ Atomic Energy Agency. The move complies with an interim deal reached with Western powers on Iran's nuclear program last year, in exchange for easing of sanctions. Henry Ridgwell reports for VOA from London.
Video

Video In Cambodia, HIV Diagnosis Brings Deadly Shame

Although HIV/AIDS is now a treatable condition, a positive diagnosis is still a life altering experience. In Cambodia, people living with HIV are often disowned by friends, family and the community. This humiliation can be unbearable. We bring you one Cambodian woman’s struggle to overcome a life tragedy and her own HIV positive diagnosis.

AppleAndroid