Germany’s Transparency International (TI) released its newest corruption index for 2015, and as usual Iraq was at the bottom of the list. TI scores countries from 0 to 100 with 100 being at the top. The ten worst countries in its new study were Somalia, North Korea, Afghanistan, Sudan, South Sudan, Angola, Libya, Iraq, Venezuela, and Guinea-Bissau. Seven of those nations had the worst ranks last year. Iraq received the same score that it had for the last two years at 16. In 2012 it did slightly better at 18.
Most Corrupt Countries On Transparency International Corruption Index 2015
1. North Korea
5. South Sudan
Iraq always ranks towards the bottom of these surveys because corruption is so rampant throughout the state. The ruling elite use graft and bribes to maintain their patronage systems and enrich themselves. That’s also the reason why there is no real push to end it either because if one top officials were to be taken down it would threaten all the rest. That’s despite repeated promises by the prime ministers, the complaints of Ayatollah Ali al-Sistani and protests that occur almost every year demanding action on the issue. Premier Haidar Abadi for example announced a reform program in August 2015 that was supposed to address corruption, but he was focused more on building up his own base and going after his rivals than actually addressing the problem, and nothing substantive was done. Abadi passed up a perfect opportunity as the street was with him and so was Najaf, but he was unwilling to seriously touch the golden goose that keeps the Iraqi parties going.
Salim, Mustafa and Cunningham, Erin, “Iraqi prime minister announces sweeping reform measures aimed at fighting corruption,” Washington Post, 8/9/15
Transparency International, “Corruption Perceptions Index 2015,” 1/27/16