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Transparency National Project

Transparency International publishes the annual Corruption Perceptions Index (CPI), which in 2006 ranked more than 150 countries by their perceived levels of corruption, as determined by expert assessments and opinion surveys. The 2006 CPI was announced in November 2006.

The CPI for 2006 put Finland (9.6), Iceland (9.6), New Zealand (9.6) and Denmark (9.5) at the top position. The lower the score means the more corrupt the country is, with the maximum score of 10.

For Asian countries, the rank from the cleanest to the most corrupt countries is as follow: Singapore (rank, score: 5, 9.4), Hong Kong (15, 8.3), Japan (17, 7.6), Taiwan (34, 5.9), South Korea (42, 5.1), Malaysia (44, 5), Thailand (63, 3.6), China (70, 3.3), India (70, 3.3), Sri Lanka (84, 3.1), Laos (111, 2.6), Timor-Leste (111, 2.6), Viet Nam (111, 2.6), Philippines (121, 2.5), Indonesia (130, 2.4), Pakistan (142, 2.2), Cambodia (151, 2.1), Bangladesh (156, 2), Myanmar (160, 1.9).

No country achieved perfect score of 10, which may mean that even the cleanest one in the world still experienced some sort of corruption problems.

Most of the Asian countries got score less than 6, except Singapore (9.4), HK (8.3) and Japan (7.6). Still many jobs need to be done for the remaining countries. My view is that the minimum score should at least be 7.6 to be excluded from the corrupt country list. The complete listing can be accessed from the Internatonal Transparency website.

Indonesia CPI ranks in 2005, 2004, 2003 were 137 (2.2), 133 (2.0) and 122 (1.9), respectively. Hence there were small but consistent improvements of the score. The 2006 CPI rank was still below from that of 2003, which means that other countries performed better than Indonesia in tackling the corruption issues.

The index might not be perfectly correct, since it measured perception instead of hard facts. Another draw back is that the respondents might have no contact at all with the institution that they assessed. However, it's better to start with something, rather than nothing.

For government officials, it's wiser to accept the report rather than showing act of denial. Suppose that an institution has done a very good job to curb corruption, but still received a low mark, then they might just want to investigate and find out why the perception was still bad. Was it because of communication problems or was there any real issues that haven't been attended properly.

The title of the post was definitely inspired by Transparency International name. Whilst the agency conducts perception audit in various institutions in the country to benchmark countries performance, I think there’s a need to have an audit to benchmark provinces and department/ministries performance within country.

Improvements of the country’s corruption perception index shall come from improvements in each province and department/ministry in curbing corruption.

Transparency National CPI is intended to rank provinces performance, and separately to rank departments/ministries performances in the fight against corrupt practices.
The measurements may need to be modified and focused on certain areas that give highest impact when they've been fixed.

Provinces play roles in the way they serve business communities in the issuance of trade permits, use of latest technology in building communication, computing and other infrastructures, management of provincial institutions to reduce embezzlements of project funds, and transparency and firmness of its tax office.

By having the audit, we can measure each of the governor’s performance. We will probably see encouraging data, where some of the provinces have actually made significant progress already.

The departments/ministries contribute a significant portion of corruption practices and most of embezzled foreign funds were and are channeled through them. By measuring CPI in each of the department/ministry we will know which one progresses, and which one worsens. As we all know that improvements can only be expected when performance measurements has been agreed and established.

The key points is to have agreement of what to be measured, how they are measured and how target respondents are selected to produce high quality audit report.

The Transparency National body can be a government or non-government organization, as long as they are fully functional independent. The essence and the execution of the audit reports are far more important.

Preferably the president can give endorsement to the project, only then the governors and the ministers will take seriously on CPI scores and ranks.
The president even may want to host the announcement in an annual meeting with all the governors and the ministers, to have the highest impact of publicity and moral push.

I was wondering whether the Indonesian Supreme Audit Board, Financial And Development Supervisory Board (BPKP), The Corruption Eradication Commission, Transparency International Indonesia, Indonesian Transparency Society (MTI), Corruption Watch etc., will be able to join forces to have a high impact corruption audit tools.

, seorang pejalan musiman dan penyuka sejarah. Penduduk Jakarta yang sedang tinggal di Cikarang Utara. Diperbarui: January 06, 2007.

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