Nearly 1 in 3 paid a bribe in Middle East and North Africa in past 12 months

New Transparency International report shows MENA governments failing to stop corruption as they suppress citizens’ voices

Issued by Transparency International Secretariat



Translations: AR


Nearly one in three citizens who tried to access basic public services in the Middle East and North Africa paid a bribe, a Transparency International report said today, showing that governments across the region have failed to hear their citizens’ voices against corruption.

According to a public opinion survey by the international anti-corruption group of nearly 11,000 adults in 9 countries and territories, the majority of people (61 per cent) across the region think that the level of corruption has gone up over the last 12 months. The 30 per cent who paid a bribe for a basic service represent the equivalent of nearly 50 million people. Click here for the full report.

“It’s as if the Arab Spring never happened. Leaders who fail to stop secrecy, fail to promote free speech and fail to stop bribery also fail to bring dignity to the daily lives of people living in the Middle East and North Africa. Peoples’ human rights are seriously affected,” said José Ugaz, Chair of Transparency International.

Public dissatisfaction with corrupt leaders and regimes was a key catalyst for change in the region, notably with Arab Spring protests. Five years on, the survey finds governments have done little to enforce laws against corruption and bribery, nor have they done enough for transparency and accountability through the promotion of freedoms of the press, civil society and for individuals.

In Lebanon, numbers are alarming as nine in ten people (92 per cent) say that they think corruption has increased.

Government officials, tax officials and members of parliament are perceived to be the most corrupt groups in the region.

Based on the findings of the survey, here are our four top recommendations:

·        Governments in the region must speak out immediately and publicly about their commitment to end corruption. They must also finally deliver on their anti-corruption commitments made globally and regionally, such as under the United Nations Convention against Corruption (UNCAC) and the Arabic Convention for Combating Corruption.

·        Governments must eradicate impunity and bring the corrupt to justice so they can take responsibility for the consequences of their acts. 

·        Governments must create a safe and enabling environment for civil society and the media to fight and report corruption.

·        Governments must involve their citizens in the fight against corruption and create the space to hold institutions to account and to help law enforcement institutions. This is especially important when the majority of citizens (58 per cent) believe they have the power to make a difference.

Note to Editors

The Global Corruption Barometer 2016 question module was implemented by the Afrobarometer network and by several national partners in the Arab Barometer network. All fieldwork was completed using a face-to-face survey methodology. The survey samples were selected and weighted to be nationally representative of all adults aged 18 and above living in each country/territory.


For any press enquiries please contact

Chris Sanders
T: +49 30 34 38 20 666
E: .(JavaScript must be enabled to view this email address)

Latest

Support Transparency International

La Justicia española debe investigar el lavado de imagen de Azerbaiyán en Europa

Tres políticos españoles —Pedro Agramunt, Agustín Conde Bajén y Jordi Xuclá— se encuentran entre los delegados ante la Asamblea Parlamentaria del Consejo de Europa (APCE) sobre los que pesan sospechas de haberse beneficiado con la maniobra del “Laundromat”.

Clean up Spain – Justice for Azerbaijan’s reputation laundering in Europe

In Azerbaijan, critical voices are routinely suppressed. Meanwhile in Europe, politicians suspected of helping whitewash Azerbaijan’s record on human rights enjoy impunity. Join our campaign to urge authorities in Spain to investigate.

Everything you need to know about the 18th International Anti-Corruption Conference (#18IACC)

The #18IACC will take place from 22-24 October in Copenhagen, Denmark under the theme Together for Development, Peace and Security: Now is the Time to Act. Get the latest info and updates here!

Risky business: Europe’s golden visa programmes

Are EU Member States accepting too much risk in their investor migration schemes?

Future Against Corruption Award 2018

TI is calling on young people across the globe to join the anti-corruption movement. People between the age of 18 and 35 are invited to submit a short video clip presenting their idea on new ways to fight corruption. Three finalists will be invited to Berlin during the International Anti-Corruption Day festivities to be awarded with the Future Against Corruption Award. Apply today!

The Azerbaijani Laundromat one year on: has justice been served?

In September last year, a massive leak of bank records from 2012 to 2014 showed that the ruling elite of Azerbaijan ran a $3 billion slush fund and an international money laundering scheme. One year on, has enough been done to hold those involved to account?

Right to information: knowledge is power

The right to information is vital for preventing corruption. When citizens can access key facts and data from governments, it is more difficult to hide abuses of power and other illegal activities - governments can be held accountable.

Social Media

Follow us on Social Media