Catharsis of Transparency International | By Ghazala Malik


Catharsis of Transparency International

TI is considered a credible authority when it comes to reporting Corruption Index of different countries.

For many donors its reputation is impeccable and it is considered a genuine benchmark like many other international watchdogs in their respective areas of expertise.

This fact may be difficult to contest however, many such international or national watchdogs have gradually started losing their finesse and shine with the passing time as they have embedded themselves within the local institutional landscapes and social fabrics, be it in the East or in the West.

Take the case of TI Pakistan Chapter.They were bubbling with reporting corruption cases from 2008 to 2012 as they were being actively supported through suo motu of the then Chief Justice.

Come the next government the TI Chapter key person was allured into the then PM folds and offered gracious support including an ambassadorial assignment in Europe.

It’s strange all this was happening and TI International and Pakistan Chapter continued business as usual.

The ratings for the period 2012 to 2018 are a reflection of this allegedly unholy alliance.

No matter how much significance international donors give to the work of TI but the reality at the country level in many cases is different.

With this remark it should not be construed that corruption does not exist.It does at all levels across the globe, be it in the corporate or in the public domain, it’s both tacit and rampant.

Unfortunately, the root causes remain unaddressed while it continues to rot from inside systemically.

Pakistan is no exception to it.What can an honest Chief Executive of a country do when corruption is so rampant that honesty remains confined to the four walls of his/her office or home.

As soon as you step out corruption is there to embrace you and to facilitate you both at the individual and the institutional levels.

All the pillars of the state are affected by its venom, its thoroughly institutionalized.The most dent it has made is on the morality of the nation by becoming socially acceptable as a norm of life.

The international financiers of the watchdogs need to restrategise the way the menace of corruption can be reported and dealt with.

They need not continue financing an obsolete initiative that has lost its touch.Rather learn from its experience and finance initiatives that can help address root out corruption and restore/save morality of the nations in general and youth in specific.

For Pakistan, the most powerful seem to have rendered ineffective in dealing with corruption.

There needs to be a coming together of all the relevant movers and shakers, national think tanks, intellects, leaders on an emergency basis to devise ways and means to pragmatically deal with corruption in an effective and efficient manner.

Unfortunately, in current times most of us are harping on national problems (e.g.economic crisis, inflation, etc.) only to gain political mileage, which is evident from the fact that none of them have a solution to tackle these.

As a nation, its high time we transit from being a part of the problem only to become a part of the solution also as this is the minimum we owe to our country.

—The writer is contributing columnist.


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