71% of households in Bangladesh pay bribes to obtain government services: TIB

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| Updated:
August 31, 2022 6:05:11 PM


According to a Transparency International Bangladesh (TIB) survey released on Wednesday, about 70.9 percent of households in the country bribe government officials to obtain services from various sectors.

The survey, titled “Corruption in Service Sectors: National Household Survey 2021”, also found that law enforcement is the most corrupt service sector (74.4%), followed by the Department of Immigration and Passports (DIP) (70.5%) and Bangladesh. Road Transport Authority (BRTA) (68.3pc), reports UNB.

Among the other most corrupt service sectors are justice (56.8 pc), health (48.7 pc), local government institutions (46.6 pc) and land services (46.3 pc).

The survey report said the country’s overall corruption rate is 40.1%, with the top three sectors receiving bribes being passports, law enforcement and BRTA.

Up to 72.1% of victims of corruption cited “service not available without corruption” as a reason for paying bribes, meaning that corruption continues to be institutionalized.

Each household, on average, has to pay a bribe of Tk 6,636 per year and the three most corrupt sectors are insurance, justice and gas utilities, the report says.

The survey revealed that 108.3 billion taka was exchanged in the form of bribes in the service sectors during the survey period from December 2020 to November 2021, or 0.4% of GDP of the country in the 2020-21 financial year and 5.9% of the revised budget. of the same fiscal year.

The TIB has conducted nine national household surveys since 1997.

According to the survey, the corruption rate in the service sectors has increased compared to 2017. In 2021, while the corruption rate in the same sectors was 70.8%, in 2017 this rate was 66, 5%. Compared to 2017, the rate of bribes or unauthorized payments decreased in 2021 but the amount of bribes increased.

Due to the process of digitalization of government, corruption in some sectors remains the same (law enforcement, passport, BRTA, etc.) and has increased in some sectors (local government institutions, NGOs, insurance, etc.) .). Furthermore, compared to 2017, the corruption rate increased in some sectors (local government institutions) and decreased in some sectors (agriculture, education and health) in 2021.

The survey shows that in 2021, the incidence of corruption in service sectors was higher in rural areas than in urban areas (36.6% compared to 46.5%). The burden of corruption is higher on low-income households than on high-income households. Low-income families are forced to pay a higher proportion of their annual income in bribes than high-income households in order to receive services.

The survey result also shows that female service recipients were more victims of corruption than male service recipients in some sectors (health, local government, other sectors) and that male service recipients were more victims of corruption. corruption than women in certain sectors (education, public services). ). In addition, service recipients aged 36 and over are relatively more victims of corruption than service recipients under 35.

The transplant watchdog has come up with a 10-point recommendation based on feedback from households that took part in the survey. The proposals include ensuring the legal accountability of those involved in corruption, digitizing all government services, implementing the code of conduct for service providers and widely publicizing the government grievance redress mechanism (GRM ).

Dr Iftekharuzzaman, executive director of TIB, said that this household survey had no connection with Transparency International’s Corruption Perceptions Index (CPI).

The global body does not use the results of this survey and other research conducted by the TIB when preparing the CPI, he said.

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