Ghana has been ranked 56th out of 168 countries in the latest Corruption Perception Index for the year 2015 by the Transparency International.
Ghana scored 47 out of a score of 100 in the CPI. This means Ghana moved back by a percentage point but better than the 2014 report.
Ghana, performed below only six African countries – Botswana, Cape Verde, Seychelles, Rwanda, Mauritius and Namibia.
Meanwhile Ghana’s performance was higher than all the remaining African countries in the 2015 corruption perception index.
According to the Transparency International (TI) report, although Ghana’ performance has improved corruption is still a serious problem in Ghana.
“The 2015 Corruption Perceptions Index clearly shows that corruption remains a blight around the world. But 2015 was also a year when people again took to the streets to protest corruption. People across the globe sent a strong signal to those in power: it is time to tackle grand corruption,” José Ugaz, Chair, Transparency International.
PRESS STATEMENT ON THE RELEASE OF THE CORRUPTION PERCEPTIONS INDEX (CPI) 2015
Transparency International, the leading civil society organization fighting corruption worldwide, released its 21st Annual Corruption Perceptions Index this morning Wednesday, 27 January 2016 globally. This year’s index ranks 168 countries/territories by their perceived levels of public sector corruption. The index draws on 12 surveys covering expert assessments and views of business people. Ghana’s assessment was based on eight assessments – the World Bank, World Economic Forum, Bertelsmann Foundation, ADB, World Justice Project, PRS International Country Risk Guide, the Economist Intelligence Unit and IHS Global Insight. The Corruption Perceptions Index is the leading global indicator of public sector corruption, offering a yearly snapshot of the relative degree of corruption by ranking countries from all over the globe.
The CPI 2015 showed that when people work together, they can succeed in the battle against corruption. According to the report released this morning, corruption is still rife globally but more countries have improved their scores than declined. However, overall, two-thirds of the 168 countries on the 2015 index scored below 50, on a scale from 0 (perceived to be highly corrupt) to 100 (perceived to be very clean). The good news is that, in countries like Guatemala, Sri Lanka and our own country – Ghana - citizen activists in groups and on their own worked hard to drive out the corrupt, sending a strong message that should encourage others to take decisive action in 2016. Investigative journalists, like Anas Aremeyaw Anas and Manasseh Awuni have also exposed corruption and other crimes and human rights abuses in Ghana.
These sentiments were expressed by José Ugaz, Chair of Transparency International, when he stated that “Corruption can be beaten if we work together. To stamp out the abuse of power, bribery and shed light on secret deals, citizens must together tell their governments they have had enough”. He added that “The 2015 Corruption Perceptions Index clearly shows that corruption remains blight around the world. But 2015 was also a year when people again took to the streets to protest corruption. People across the globe sent a strong signal to those in power: it is time to tackle grand corruption”. .
The CPI 2015 made use of eight data sources out of the 12 data sources to compute the index for Ghana. These sources that have assessed Ghana with regards to corruption, are the World Bank (CPIA) – 47, the African Development Bank (55), the Bertelsmith Foundation (45), the World Economic Forum (33), the World Justice Project (37), the Economic intelligence Unit (54), the PRS International Country Risk Guide (50) and the HIS Global Insight (52). The Ghana score is, therefore, an average of the scores from these data sources. The institutions are independent institutions with a high level of credibility and their assessments are considered credible.
The CPI 2015 scored Ghana 47 out of clean score of 100 and ranked the country 56 out of 168 countries. Thus, Ghana slided back by one percentage point from the 48 points scored in 2014 but better than its performance in 2012 when it scored 45 and 2013 when it scored 46 points. Ghana performed below six African countries (Botswana - 63, Cape Verde - 55, Seychelles - 55, Rwanda – 54, Mauritius and Namibia 53). However, as in previous years, Ghana’s score and ranking show that the country has performed much better than several other African countries, including South Africa, Senegal and Tunisia. Thus, although scoring lower than six African countries, Ghana has scored higher than all the rest of the African countries included in the CPI 2015.
This does not mean that corruption is not a serious problem in Ghana because, like two-thirds of the rest of the 168 countries/territories ranked by their perceived levels of public sector corruption, Ghana scored below the 50 pass mark. Although the government of Ghana has also started pursuing the corrupt in the country, this still remains selective and needs to be improved. The pursuance of the officials of the National Service Secretariat, the National Health Insurance Scheme, the Smartys and the GYEEDA needs to be commended but there is a lot more to be done. The AMERI case needs to be investigated. The African Automobile cars are left to rot at the Institute of Local Government Studies even after the Judgment Debt Commission has concluded its work. Some of the people indicted by the Commission’s report are still holding public positions. Public officers who won their parliamentary primaries are still holding onto their public positions. This shows that we have still not put in enough effort and commitment in tackling corruption.
The African Picture
In Africa, Botswana came up first with a score of 63, ranking 28 globally, followed by Cape Verde and Seychelles scored 55 and ranked 40 while Rwanda scored 54 and ranked 44 globally. Both Namibia and Mauritius scored 53 and ranked 45. Clearly, all the six countries that performed better than Ghana passed the 50% pass mark. Although always the best performer in Africa although Botswana seems to be sliding backwards as in 2014, the country scored 63 as against 64 and 65 in 2013 and 2012, respectively.
However, many African countries still remain at the bottom of the CPI 2015. Somalia (8) remained at the very bottom with North Korea. Sudan (12), South Sudan (15), Angola (15) and Libya (16) performed slightly better, beating only Afghanistan (11) outside the continent. Other African countries, such as Guinea-Bissau (17), Eritrea (18), Zimbabwe (21) and Burundi (21) are also at the bottom although slightly better.
Globally, Denmark has continued its lead in the CPI 2015, scoring 91, having scored 92 both in 2014 and 2013 and 90 in 2012 but ranking first in all these years. Denmark was followed by Finland with a score of 90 and ranking 2, Sweden and New Zealand followed with scores of 89 (3) and 88 (4), respectively. The Netherlands and Norway both scored 87, ranking 5 with Switzerland following with a score of 86 and ranking 7. Finland has urged up a bit to a score of 90 from its score of 89 both in 2014 and 2013. New Zealand has slided backwards in the CPI 2015 from its impressive scores of 91 in both 2014 and 2013. Singapore dropped out of the best seven, scoring 85 out of 100 and ranking 8.
From other previous years, it is clear that the top performers have remained almost the same over the years and are largely clean of corruption, near perfect but short of a clean score of 100. These countries are characterized by a high level of transparency and accountability, which are essential to help curb corruption. These countries are helped by strong access to information systems and rules governing the behaviour of those in public positions and they should be good examples to Ghana. However, the fact remains that no country has scored 100 or even 95 for a very long time, an indication that corruption is a global canker and that no country is free from it. This calls for a global approach to the fight against corruption and a call for support to the less performing countries by the leading countries.
The fight against corruption requires all hands on deck and that is why Transparency International’s chair, José Ugaz, has emphasized the importance of the various roles that civil society organisations can play in exposing, detecting and sanctioning corrupt behaviours.
What Needs to be Done
Governments need to ensure real and systemic reform – starting with freeing judiciaries from political influence and creating better regional cooperation between law enforcement to stop the corrupt hiding in different jurisdictions. Citizens, meanwhile, should continue their calls for change. In 2015 we saw ever more people connect the poor services they receive with the illicit enrichment of a few corrupt individuals. These people need to keep up their pressure on leaders, and demand the accountable, well-functioning institutions they deserve.
Ghana Integrity Initiative wishes to call on all Ghanaians, no matter their partisan affiliation to RESIST, CONDEMN AND REPORT all forms of CORRUPTION and abuse of power in our society! But GII calls on government to promptly investigate any credible allegations of corruption it receives. The reports of Commissions of Enquiry must also be implemented.