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Corruption still rife in North Africa
Nearly one in three citizens who tried to access basic public services in the Middle East and North Africa paid a bribe, according to a Transparency International report which shows that governments across the region have failed to hear their citizens’ voices against corruption.
According to a public opinion survey by the international anti-corruption group of nearly 11 000 adults in nine countries and territories, the majority of people (61%) across the region think that the level of corruption has gone up over the last 12 months. The 30% who paid a bribe for a basic service represent the equivalent of nearly 50-million people.
Public dissatisfaction with corrupt leaders and regimes was a key catalyst for change in region, notably with Arab Spring protests. Five years on, the survey finds governments have done little to enforce laws against corruption and bribery, nor have they done enough for transparency and accountability through the promotion of freedoms of the press, civil society and for individuals.
In Lebanon, numbers are alarming as nine in 10 people (92%) say that they think corruption has increased.
Government officials, tax officials and members of parliament are perceived to be the most corrupt groups in the region.
Based on the findings of the survey, Transparency International has put forward four top recommendations: