[www.inewsguyana.com] – The People’s Progressive Party Civic’s (PPP-C) continued refusal to accept the results of Transparency International’s (TI) annual Corruption Perception Index is the political equivalent of denying the existence of Santa Claus even though his familiar figure is instantly recognizable to most of the world’s population.
This is according to Alliance for Change Member Dominic Gaskin during the party’s weekly press briefing on Wednesday (December 11).
He said it is the AFC’s view that, perceived or not, the Corruption Perception Index is a very real tool, used by governments, investors, organizations and individuals worldwide to assess corruption levels in different countries.
Gaskin contended that by ‘challenging the results of the index and attacking the local chapter of Transparency International’, the PPP/C Government is positioning itself on the wrong side of the war against corruption.
“This is clearly its comfort zone from which it intends to retaliate against those who speak out against corruption” the AFC Member added.
The results of the 2013 Corruption Perception Index ranks Guyana as 136 out of 177 countries surveyed with a score of 27 points out of 100. This is down from last year’s ranking of 133 out of 176 countries, and 28 points. According to Gaskin the AFC is neither surprised, nor confused by these results, since it is consistent with the everyday experiences and observances of most Guyanese.
“The Government’s steadfast refusal to establish independent and constitutionally required bodies such as the Office of the Ombudsman, the Integrity Commission and the Public Procurement Commission does little to assure our citizens that it has any desire to seriously address issues such as corruption, nepotism and other abuses by public officials.”
Gaskin told reporters that the AFC will continue its campaign against corruption since “unlike the PPP-C, we believe it exists and we understand that it is the people of Guyana who pay the real price for the corruption that has taken over our country.”
The Guyana Government since the report was published has rejected the findings. According to President Donald Ramotar TI has failed to recognize government’s efforts in this regard. He called for the body to make public the methodology uses and its sources of information.