Report does not reflect increase in corruption: Transparency International

Published January 26, 2020
Pakistan was assigned a score of 32, a point lower than its score of 33 on the 2018 index. — Reuters/File
Pakistan was assigned a score of 32, a point lower than its score of 33 on the 2018 index. — Reuters/File

Transparency International – Pakistan, which last week released a global corruption perceptions report showing Pakistan had slipped three spots from the previous year's ranking, on Sunday issued a clarification saying that the lowering of Pakistan’s rating did not “reflect an increase or decrease in corruption as it is within the standard margin of error”.

According to a press release issued on Sunday, the anti-graft non-government organisation (NGO) said it wanted to set the record straight and issue clarifications regarding “misreporting on CPI [Corruption Perceptions Index] 2019 in the media”.

The statement says that certain sections of media misreported ratings of the Bertelsmann Stiftung Transformation Index 2020, using data from the 2018 index instead. The data for the 2020 Bertelsmann Index, according to the statement, has not yet been made public and was exclusively made available to TI for the formation of its report.

Responding to the government's criticism following the release of the report, the press release clarified that TI had in no way termed the government of President Musharraf as most corrupt in the country, nor was the current government referred to as the second most corrupt one. The PML-N and PPP governments were also not called the “cleanest” ones.

Addressing a press conference in Islamabad on Friday, Special Assistant to the Prime Minister on Information Dr Firdous Ashiq Awan had lambasted the TI report, saying: "There is a huge question mark over the transparency of TI. It is necessary to expose the people and the data, on the basis of which this this report was published, in front of the public.

"Who will respect the findings of a report that says the most amount of corruption was done during the government of Gen Pervez Musharraf, followed by Imran Khan’s government and then by the Pakistan Peoples Party (PPP), placing the PML-N government at the very bottom?" Awan had questioned.

“[The] reality is that CPI 2019 has not given any such rating for Pakistan, nor for any other country. TI does not have its own data input in CPI, and TI Pakistan has no role in the creation of the CPI, nor does it have any data input in it,” TI said in its statement.

The NGO further clarified that the corruption perceptions index is prepared by its Germany wing and that Transparency International Pakistan had no role in the creation of the CPI.

“The CPI aggregates data from 13 different sources of 12 different institutions that provide perception of corruption by business people and country experts of the level of corruption in public sector. Each of the scores of the 13 sources included in the CPI is standardised by TI and data is entered in a software, to calculate for the aggregation into the CPI score.

"The standardisation converts all the data points to a scale of 0 to 100 where a zero represents the highest level of perceived corruption, and 100 the lowest level of perceived corruption, CPI 2019 for Pakistan has used data of 8 sources,” the press release said, clarifying how the CPI is generated.

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