Private Sector Commission and the Transparency Institute of Guyana pledges to work together on key initiatives to fight corruption – 12th Mar 2013
The Private Sector Commission is doing what the Government of Guyana is not, i.e., recognizing the importance and the weight of opinion polls put out by agencies like Transparency International. In a release on perceived corruption in countries around the world by Transparency International in December last, Guyana scored a lowly 28 points out of a possible 100 to be ranked 133 out of 176 countries that were assessed.
Among the indicators used would be the ease with which one can do business here or if bribes and kickbacks are solicited in return for services which are free or attract small fees. The private sector body called the local TI body for a meeting recently to discuss the publishing of the Index saying that reports like those do no good for a country’s image. In fact, the PSC thinks that the results are exaggerated since the Corruption Perception Index is just that meaning it is based on perception and not on reality. The PSC also believes that the methodology used by TI does not take the Guyana realities into consideration. The PSC after agreeing that corruption is indeed of concern, said it will work with the TIGI and other Stakeholders to ensure that the Public Procurement Commission , The Integrity Commission are made operational. They will also work with Transparency Guyana to tackle money laundering, push for the appointment of an Ombudsman and try to help in bringing the Access to Information Act into operation. TI Guyana for its part, acknowledged that absolute corruption is hard to quantify since the sources of information are not so wide ranging and may only come to light during an investigation or prosecution among others. The Government of Guyana dismissed the report with Finance Minister, Dr. Ashni Singh saying then, that Government has taken significant and commendable measures to strengthen its institutions and legislation that fight corruption.