According to an annual survey, the police are perceived to be the most corrupt sector at the national level followed by tendering and contracting, judiciary and education as the second, third and fourth, respectively.
Transparency International (TI) Pakistan on Friday released the results of the National Corruption Perception Survey 2022 (NCPS) — the seventh in a series for the past 21 years — as the world marks International Anti-Corruption Day.
The police ranked the highest in the previous year’s survey as well.
The provincial breakdown of the three “most corrupt” sectors revealed that education in Sindh was believed to be the most corrupt sector; the police came in at second, while tendering and contracting was the third.
In Punjab, police again came in first, while tendering and contracting came in second followed by the judiciary.
In Khyber Pakhtunkhwa, the judiciary was perceived to be the most corrupt sector, followed by tendering and contracting and the police at second and third, respectively.
In Balochistan, tendering and contracting took the lead followed by the police and judiciary at the second and third spot, respectively.
TI Pakistan Chairman Justice (retd) Zia Pervez said that the 2022 survey had been entrusted to its partner organisations with the objective to enhance the credibility of the NCPS and to develop knowledge of partner organisations on public survey mechanisms.
He hoped that the results of the survey would be utilised by various government departments to implement reforms.
“This will help in reducing corruption and making the lives of the public a little better,” he said.
‘45pc consider anti-graft institutions ineffective’
At the national level, 45pc of the survey-takers considered the role of anti-graft institutions as “ineffective” in curbing corruption in the country.
In Sindh, only 35pc of Pakistanis considered the role of the National Accountability Bureau (NAB) effective in combating corruption. In KP, 61pc considered the role of “none of the anti-corruption institutions” to be effective in curbing corruption, followed by Balochistan (58pc) and Punjab (31pc).
Pakistanis at the national level continued to believe that corruption in public service delivery was high. According to the survey, the three most corrupt public services were contracts of roads (40pc), access to uninterrupted electricity (28pc) and access to clean drinking water (17pc).
In Sindh, Punjab and Balochistan, maintenance of roads topped the list of public service delivery perceived by the citizens to be most corrupt. While in KP, majority of the citizens (47pc) considered access to uninterrupted electricity to be the most corrupt public service delivery.
Separately, the survey also found that the three most important causes of corruption at the national level were: “delayed decisions” in corruption cases (31pc), use of state institutions by governments for their personal gain (26pc) and government incompetence (19pc).
The citizens of Sindh and Punjab considered the “use of state institutions by governments for their personal gain” as the most potent reason for corruption in Pakistan, at 43pc and 29pc respectively.
In KP and Balochistan, the people considered a “delay in decisions of corruption cases” as the main reason for corruption in the country, at 43pc and 32pc respectively.
Moreover, 33pc of Pakistanis at the national level believe that as a measure to prevent corruption, the crime should be punishable by life imprisonment, according to the survey.
Further, 28pc think that all government officials, politicians, military officers and judges should disclose their assets to the public, while another 25pc say that corruption cases should be heard by anti-corruption courts, NAB and the Federal Investigation Agency (FIA) on a daily basis and decided within six months.
In Sindh, 39pc of citizens believe that in order to curb corruption, cases should be heard in NAB, FIA and anti-corruption courts on a daily basis and decided in six months.
Citizens in Punjab (32pc) and KP (38pc) feel that corruption should be punishable by lifetime imprisonment.
While in Balochistan, 33pc said that in order to control corruption, the government should immediately make it mandatory for all officials, politicians, military officers judges to disclose their assets to the public.
Local NGOs thought to be effective during flood response
The NCPS also shed a light on the devastating floods during the monsoon season this year by emphasising the need for transparency and accountability in the utilisation of funds for the floods.
At a national level, about 62pc of Pakistanis considered the role of local non-governmental organisations (NGOs) as effective and better during the recent floods.
The percentage of people in each province who thought that the local NGOs had worked well during the flood response was as follows: 52pc in Balochistan, 54pc in Punjab, 62pc in Sindh and 79pc in KP.
Additionally, a vast majority of Pakistanis at the national level — 70pc — believed that the funds were not distributed transparently. The provincial breakdown showed 62pc of citizens in Punjab, 67pc in Sindh, 68pc in Punjab, and 82pc in KP were of this opinion.
A whopping 60pc of the survey-takers at a national level thought that the flood donations and relief efforts made by NGOs should be made more transparent. The province breakdown came to 64pc in Sindh, 60pc in Punjab, 75pc in KP and 40pc in Balochistan.
Further, 88pc of the population at a national level believed that details of the donations and expenditures of all NGOs should be publicly available on their websites. The provincial breakdown came in as 86pc in Sindh, 93pc in Punjab, 92pc in KP and 90pc in Balochistan.
Lack of transparency, information
A significant amount of the population, 77pc, at a national level found it difficult to obtain public information from public bodies under right to information laws.
The provincial breakdown came in at 87pc in Sindh, 83pc in Punjab, 71pc in KP and 68pc in Balochistan.
This coincided with 66pc, at a national level, who said that the government did not take any corrective action to redress their complaints. At the provincial level, in 57pc in Sindh, 70pc in Punjab, 70pc in KP and 67pc in Balochistan were unsatisfied with the government’s actions to address their complaints.
A majority of Pakistanis at a national level, 64pc, believed that the country had not benefitted from the agreement with the International Monetary Fund (IMF).
In Sindh, 58pc thought Pakistan had benefitted from the agreement. But 70pc in Punjab, 67pc in KP and 76 in Balochistan thought otherwise.
Further, 54pc of Pakistanis at a national level believed that the reporting of news channels was biased. The survey, however, showed that 61pc in KP and 53pc in Balochistan thought the opposite.
In Sindh and Punjab, 72pc and 59pc, respectively, considered the reporting of news channels to be biased.