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1 December 2011 | Angeline Albert
The UK has failed to make the top 10 countries considered to have the least corrupt public sector according to Transparency International.
Published today, the organisation’s Corruption Perceptions Index 2011 ranked 183 countries according to perceived levels of public-sector corruption and found the UK trailing behind 15 other countries including Japan, Germany and Canada.
The index draws on 17 surveys carried out by independent institutions and is based on responses to questions relating to the bribery of public sector officials, kickbacks in procurement and embezzlement of public funds. It also questions the effectiveness of anti-corruption efforts.
The index scores countries from 0 (highly corrupt) to 10 (very clean) and the UK scored 7.8 placing it joint 16th with Barbados and Austria.
Transparency International said the UK’s public sector was not helped by the ‘revolving door’ that allowed politicians to become business advisors/leaders and board members in the private sector while business leaders became politicians.
Of the southern Africa countries, Botswana was perceived to be the least corrupt scoring 6.1 and placing it 32nd globally.It was followed by Namibia with a score of 4.4 (ranked 57), South Africa 4.1 (64), Lesotho 3.5 (77), Swaziland 3.1 (95), Mozambique 2.7 (120) and Angola, which scored 2.0 placing it 168th.
The report said the results for 2011 shows some governments failing to protect citizens from corruption – be it abuse of public resources, bribery or secretive decision-making.
Huguette Labelle, chairwoman of Transparency International, said: “This year we have seen corruption on protestors’ banners, be they rich or poor. Whether in Europe hit by the debt crisis or an Arab world starting a new political era, leaders must heed the demands for better government.”
New Zealand was considered to be the least corrupt with a score of 9.5 and Somalia the most scoring 1. The US lagged behind the UK in 24th place, scoring 7.1.