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Little trust for anti-graft agents - study

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  1. BAK

    BAK JF-Expert Member

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    Little trust for anti-graft agents - study

    2009-01-31 11:33:26
    By Hannah Mwandoloma​

    A new study shows that more than half the Tanzanian people distrust anti-corruption agents and are not satisfied with efforts being made to fight graft in the country.

    Results of the study were revealed at a policy forum in Dar es Salaam yesterday under the theme: ``Who is not corrupt in Tanzania?``, to which the Prevention and Combating of Corruption Bureau (PCCB) was invited to but did not send a representative.

    Concern for Development Initiatives in Africa (Fordia) executive director Buberwa Kaiza, whose agency carried out the study, submitted that 57.1 per cent of people interviewed said cases of corruption reported were not followed up because most top political leaders were perceived as corrupt.

    ``The majority of people interviewed claimed not to have faith in the efforts done to fight corruption, saying that the system itself is bred with corruption,`` he explained.

    According to him, more than half Tanzanian citizens said no concrete actions were being taken against corrupt people because most political leaders got their positions by corrupt means.

    Giving details, Kaiza said the survey was done between February and June last year in seven regions and involved some 2,000 people, among them 800 ordinary wananchi, 263 leaders and 900 people from 91 different discussion groups.

    The regions are Morogoro, Lindi, Mtwara, Mbeya, Shinyanga, Kagera and Ruvuma.

    ``71.3 per cent of key informers and 28.7 per cent of household representatives interviewed said they do not see any efforts to fight corruption,`` he said, adding that 34.8 per cent had confidence and they were ready to volunteer information on corruption incidents but did not believe there would be any action taken afterwards.

    ``The other 63.2 per cent of leaders who are the key informers and 40 per cent of ordinary people said they did not know where to find PCCB and that the environment did not encourage them to give information,`` noted the Fordia executive.

    Giving his reaction during contributions from the floor, Muffin Environmental Trust director Godfrey Moshe said the tendency by anti-corruption institutions of not taking serious action against people linked to graft allegations put off ordinary citizens, ``especially those ready to reveal scandals like incidents of corruption``.

    ``People are getting tired of reporting such incidents when nothing is done about the case so reported. A villager travels for miles to give information, not even sure of his or her own safety, and all that the authorities do is to warn the corrupt or even ignore the complaints,`` Mosha said, adding that the whole exercise lose meaning.

    Speaking of corruption incidents surrounding most of politicians, Moshe said Members of Parliament and councillors should also have specific terms of service.

    He said it was his belief that this also encouraged corrupt people to stay in power "for several generations".

    Action Aid Country Director Rose Mushy observed that it was high time the government reviewed the political campaigns financing bill ``because there is a need to create a more transparent environment for people wishing to vie for political positions in the country``.

    ``The current environment in a way encourages politicians to be corrupt one needs a lot of money to campaign. If we vote for corrupt leaders, how do we expect them to fight corruption?`` she asked.

    Other contributors from the floor said the media had a big role to play in fighting corruption. They cited the grand corruption scandals that journalists had unearthed in the last few years.

    SOURCE: Guardian