, NAIROBI, Kenya, Oct 26 – Kenya’s corruption perception index (CPI) has sunk even lower among local and international business circles, despite government efforts, with the country being placed at position 154 out of 178 countries worldwide.
The index which is based on 13 different expert and business surveys done by the Transparency International (TI) lists Kenya behind Rwanda, Tanzania, Ethiopia, Eritrea and Uganda indicating that the vice is still a major problem for the country.
TI Kenya Executive Director Samuel Kimeu said in the ranking, Kenya fared at par with countries that are in turmoil.
“Kenya was ranked 146 in 2009 and 147 in 2008 so as you can see that in terms of the corruption perception, our country has been going down,” he said.
Rwanda, Eritrea and Uganda were ranked positions 66, 123 and 127 respectively while Tanzania and Ethiopia tied at position 116.
He proposed that Kenya renews its fight against corruption in order to produce desired results.
“It’s an indictment on our government systems… with the framework that has been created by the new Constitution, we can re-energise the war against corruption and maybe even see improved scores and more importantly see real changes in the lives of Kenyans,” he explained.
The index which comes at a time when the country is grappling with high level corruption scandals placed Botswana as the least corrupt African country followed closely by Mauritius. The worst performers were led by Somalia, followed by Sudan, Chad and Burundi.
Mr Kimeu also called on the President and Prime Minister to take swift action against all officials in the Foreign Affairs Ministry implicated in the corrupt and fraudulent purchase of embassy property in Tokyo, Japan.
He also asked the two principals to keep a close eye on the court proceedings involving Nairobi City Council officials charged over the Sh283 million cemetery scandal.
“There have been reports of persistent lobbying of legislators by those accused of impropriety in the transaction and their political supporters. We urge Members of Parliament to reject or adopt the report with their conscience and demonstrate willingness to fight corruption in Kenya,” he said.
Mr Kimeu further explained that Kenya scored a dismal 2.1 on a scale of 0 to 10 where 0 indicates high level corruption.
“The exposure of corruption scandals in the public sector in the latter days gives credence to the rating which consigns Kenya among the 25 lowest scoring countries. Kenya finds herself in the company of countries that are perceived to be endemically corrupt,” he said.
He however observed that there was a corruption problem across the world: “This year’s findings indicates that nearly three quarters of the 178 countries score less than five in the index score indicating a serious graft problem globally.”