The formal launch of a new national chapter of Transparency International "marked a milestone in the fight against corruption", said Peter Eigen, Chairman of Transparency International. In a message to the launch today in Gaborone, he said: "The groundwork has been laid for an effective anti-corruption strategy, and the formation of the national chapter is an indication that the efforts and vigilance of anti-corruption campaigners will continue to grow in strength."
In last year's Corruption Perceptions Index published by Transparency International, Botswana was ranked 26th of 90 countries surveyed (where the first placed is the least corrupt country). The survey ranks countries according to the perceptions of the degree of corruption in the eyes of business people, risk analysts and the general public. With a score of 6.0 (10 signifies highly free of corruption and 0 signifies highly corrupt), Botswana ranked between 25th place Belgium (with a score of 6.1) and 27th placed Estonia (5.7).
Transparency International Botswana is formulating an action programme, including a public education programme to heighten awareness about the damage caused by corruption.
"Botswana has made a good start in fighting corruption. The Directorate on Corruption and Economic Crime in Botswana has processed thousands of cases since 1994, and the national chapter will closely monitor the effectiveness of its work," continued Peter Eigen. "The commitment of TI Botswana to building up the coalition against corruption is a very welcome development. With the support of President Festus Mogae, there is a wonderful opportunity to make even greater strides against corruption."
The President of Botswana, Festus Mogae, who attended the launch, is a member of the international Advisory Council of Transparency International.
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