In Summary
  • Kenya is among the half-dozen African countries with the highest rates of reported bribery.

  • The Democratic Republic of Congo ranks as the most pervasively corrupt country included in the Transparency International report, with 80 percent of those surveyed in the DRC saying they pay bribes.

  • Mauritius has the lowest overall bribery rate (five percent), followed by Botswana (seven percent), Cabo Verde (eight percent), Namibia (11 percent) and Lesotho (14 percent).

Large majorities of Kenyans believe that corruption is worsening and that the government is failing to halt the upsurge, a global graft-fighting organisation reported on Thursday.

Two-thirds of Kenyans polled by Transparency International perceive corruption as having increased in the previous 12 months, while an even larger share — 71 percent — say the government is not responding adequately to this spreading scourge.

NEW SURVEY

Growing numbers of Kenyans who use public services complain that they have to pay bribes, Transparency International found in the new Africa edition of its Global Corruption Barometer.

The Berlin-based NGO said that 45 percent of surveyed Kenyans reported incidents of bribery in the previous 12 months, compared to 37 percent in 2015.

Kenyan police were cited as the leading recipients of bribes, with increasing percentages of citizens saying they also had to make illicit payoffs to public schools, utilities and public clinics.

Substantial and growing portions of the public view key Kenyan institutions as entirely or mostly corrupt, added the report prepared in partnership with the Afrobarometer research network.

About a third of the 1599 Kenyans polled for the report regard the institution of the presidency as tinged with corruption.

Perceptions of members of Parliament are even more negative, with almost half of those surveyed saying at least some MPs are corrupt. An almost identical share held the same negative opinion of government officials at both the national and local levels.

But improvements in perception were registered in regard to judges and magistrates, with 28 percent in the latest poll seeing the courts as corrupt, compared to 33 percent who offered that view in 2015.

CULTURE OF IMPUNITY

More than three-quarters of Kenyans said they feared retaliation if they reported corruption. And a diminished share — 54 percent, down from 58 percent in 2015 — voice confidence that ordinary citizens can make a difference in the fight against graft.

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