Transparency International shines light on probity

While some GCC states were ranked favourably on the recently published Global Corruption Index 2019, most Arab countries earned places among the top 100 out of 180 nations globally that fared rather poorly.
The Sultanate was ranked fourth among Arab countries and 56th globally, with a score of 52 out of 100 on the Global Corruption Index 2019, the same position it held in 2018.
The UAE was ranked first among Arab countries in the fight against corruption and 21st globally with a score of 71, followed by Qatar in second place in the Arab world and 30th globally with a score of 63.
Saudi Arabia advanced to third place in the Arab world and 51st globally with a score of 53, while Jordan ranked fifth in the Arab world and 60th globally, with a score of 48.
As for the Arab countries that occupied ranks under 70 in the global ranking, Tunisia ranked sixth in the Arab world and 74th globally with a score of 43, followed by Bahrain in the 77th place globally with a score of 42, then Morocco in the 80th place with a score of 41, and Kuwait, which fell to the 85th place globally with a score of 40.
There are a number of Arab countries that ranked below 100. Algeria and Egypt ranked 106, followed by Djibouti at 126, Lebanon and Mauritania at 137, Iraq at 162 just after Comoros at 153, Yemen at 177 and Syria at 178, whereas Somalia came at the bottom of the list, ranking last at 180 globally.
Transparency International indicates in its recent data on the Global Corruption Index that it does not differ much from previous years, nor have these countries been able to address the scourge of corruption that is rampant in their official institutions, government companies, private sector institutions and civil society organisations, who are sometimes involved in corruption instead of combating it.
Data also indicates that Western countries ranked top on the annual index, with no Arab countries among the top twenty.
Both Denmark and New Zealand topped the list of countries, scoring 87 out of 100, followed by Finland, which also scored 87. These indicators confirm that European countries are more eager to fight corruption, while most African and Arab countries are at the bottom of the list in corruption fighting methods and laws. Over 120 countries scored under 50.
The Transparency International report does not reassure governments and residents of the region.
Many countries are still suffering from corruption due to the absence of integrity in matters that concern political, economic and social life, which is contrary to legislation and laws, in addition to the rampant corruption in government institutions, and in the practice of bureaucracy in daily business to receive cash under the table, posing a challenge for those countries and their institutions.
The Arab region needs more transparent action and fair trials of corrupt people to change the reality of life in societies by intensifying audits and controls and enhancing legal accountability and transparency in the media. It needs to build institutions that are transparent in the process of unearthing corruption, holding corrupt people accountable and publishing these issues and rulings in various media, along with the need to spread awareness among Arab citizens in order to preserve public funds.

haiderdawood@hotmail.com