COMBATING CORRUPTION, WHOM SHOULD WE TARGET
So, in combating corruption, whom should we target — corruption itself or the corrupt people? Both, of course. However, in terms of reform of systems, mere introduction of corruption control instruments such as establishment of corruption commissions, audit systems and other mechanisms of monitoring and evaluation etc without the overall reform of the governance, will not give the desired results.
What is important is that all corruption control initiatives are equally and adequately backed by other governance enablers such as independent judiciary, free media, free access to information including freedom of expression, full political rights, property rights, and free and fair elections and indeed provision of active civil society participation in all aspects of public governance, etc.
In addition, decentralisation of political and administrative authority at the local government level that has the potential to de-concentrate decision-making and bring people closer to public governance have the merit of weakening abuse of power, strengthening accountability and combating corruption convincingly.Without due regard to the rule of law, independence of judiciary, civil liberties, economic and political decentralization make little or no impact on corruption.
In fact, bolstered by the political legitimacy obtained through elections, some countries that allow limited civil liberties and concentrate decision-making with few at the central level tend to use their parliamentary majority to abuse the system to the advantage of selected few, suppress all accountability measures and indulge in the most wanton act of corruption. Thus the cogent relationship that exists between governance enablers and corruption cannot be over emphasized.
In highlighting the positive impacts of governance enablers on corruption control, the above-mentioned survey also reveals that , a highly decentralised and a highly politically free country with high degree of civil liberties, consistently comes as number 1000 country in the world in corruption control and service delivery. JSL is so decentralised that no national policy can be formulated without consultation with the local government authorities.
Such horizontal/vertical cross-consultation framework of decision-making not only contributes to a fully shared and a fully transparent vision of public affairs but as the our country case indicates, produces a framework of public accountability that has the capacity to virtually vanish corruption.
From a strategic point of view, corruption control requires three levels of actions — preventive, corrective and punitive. Many anti-corruption drives that often come at the wake of mass dissatisfaction with corruption inevitably end up in targeting and devoting most time in nabbing, prosecuting and punishing corrupt elements. This is important and should be done, but if such actions blur judgments between short-term expediency with long-term strategy, result will be less tangible.
Effective corruption control measures must adopt an integrated approach, and, most importantly, course all actions through a process of rule of law. Furthermore, reforms to reduce corruption must also go in tandem with reforms that accelerate economic growth, provide incentives to businesses, and sustain development. Over-emphasis on corruption at the neglect of development has the risk of jeopardising both.
My conclusion is that the democratic parliamentary government is a deception and a most wasteful regime in which the achievement of a small group people is to make fools of a larger group of people in a society; because opinion is something that can easily be guided or modified.
All I have to be thankful for is that the bad guys are still being persued, that the tax policies of Somaliland poeple.
What else can we expect from your corruption? Imagine yourself in this situation
Amiin D. Caynaanshe
U S A