Guyana ranked a very poor 27 out of 100 points in the Transparency International 2013 Corruption Perceptions Index (CPI).
The report was released this morning. Last year, Guyana scored 28 points.
Guyana is again doing worse than every other country in Caricom except for Haiti (19) which has also traditionally been one of the worst performers.
Transparency International (TI) premiered a new methodology last year where countries are ranked from 1 to 100 points with 100 representing the least corrupt. Any score below 50 indicates a serious problem and though it is not possible to meaningfully compare Guyana’s performance with the previous methodology, the country remains in the bracket of those with a very serious problem.
By contrast, Barbados scored 75 points, the highest in Caricom, The Bahamas 71, St Lucia 71, Trinidad and Tobago 38 and Jamaica 38. Suriname came in at 36 this year.
The perception of corruption has remained a big problem for the Ramotar administration over the last two years.
In a statement accompanying the report, TI which first issued a report in 1995, said
“Corruption continues to have a devastating impact on societies and individuals around the world, with more than two-thirds of countries surveyed scoring less than 50 out of 100 in the latest Corruption Perceptions Index (CPI).
“Despite 2013 being a year in which governments around the world passed new laws and forged fresh commitments to end corruption, people are not seeing the results of these promises.
“Anti-corruption is an increasingly attractive platform for politicians, with many incorporating anti-corruption pledges into their election campaigns. It reflects waning public tolerance towards corruption. The danger, however, is that these anti-corruption promises fail to materialise.
“Government guarantees of greater accountability do not always bring about tangible results at the local level. Protests in Brazil this summer showed public exasperation at the continuation of political scandals in spite of governmental assurances of a zero-tolerance policy on corruption.
Words must be backed by action
“Some countries, such as Estonia, have seen improved CPI scores go hand in hand with efforts to combat corruption, such as the development of a new anti-corruption strategy.
“Other countries, however, prove that words are not enough in the fight against corruption. After a summer blighted by political scandals indicating a lack of accountability and fading public trust, Spain tried to remedy its corruption troubles with a new Transparency Law.
It is certainly a step in the right direction, but the provisions do not go far enough. This missed opportunity to bring about significant legislative changes is particularly worrying given Spain’s six-point drop in this year’s index.
“While countries such as Myanmar have seen significant improvements in the perceived success of their anti-corruption efforts; on average, perceived levels of corruption have failed to improve globally since 2012.
“EU and Western European countries continue to perform best with an average score of 66, while Sub-Saharan African countries once again show the highest perceived levels of public sector corruption, averaging a score of 33.
“But scores vary widely within each region and with a global average of just 43, all regions have a long way to go in curbing corruption.
Corruption persists in being a pervasive force in the public sector, hurting citizens in their daily lives and in times of dire need.”