It would seem that most South African’s know of someone who has been solicited to pay a bribe – and most of them paid it.
Ethics SA has released a survey on the current state of bribery in South Africa, focusing on the experiences of ordinary citizens.
A whopping 74% of respondents personally know of someone who was asked to pay a bribe in the last year, and 75% of them ended up paying it.
The stats show that almost twice as many people were approached for a bribe in Limpopo as compared to the other provinces. Respondents from the Western Cape were asked less frequently, but were more inclined to pay if asked.
The majority of these bribes were for traffic offenses (34%), followed by jobs (17%), driver’s licences (13%) and tenders (7%). Illicit discounts or theft from business was 4%, police and criminal charges 4%, education/qualifications 3% and Home Affairs 3%. Housing/land came in at 2%, social grant/pension at 2% and other at 11%.
The average bribe amount was R2 005.00, with 21,5% of them being below R100.00.
Most respondents believe that it’s unlikely their family or friends would pay a bribe, with respondents between 46 and 55 years old thinking it is most common.
Almost three quarters (74%) of respondents agree that citizens can do something to stop bribery, and 66% of respondents agree that people are willing to avoid paying bribes. However, almost eight out of 10 people (78%) do not believe it is possible to get through everyday life in South Africa without paying a bribe.