Most think S'pore will deal with corrupt officials: Poll

Most think S'pore will deal with corrupt officials: Poll

SINGAPORE - Corrupt civil servants in Singapore will not be able to dodge the long arm of the law, people believe. And confidence in Singapore's anti-corruption capabilities has placed the country among the top five internationally, according to a new global study.

More than seven out of 10 people polled believe that any high- ranking government official here who misuses public funds will not get away with it.

The study, released by the Washington-based World Justice Project (WJP) on Tuesday, placed Botswana, New Zealand, Norway and Hong Kong ahead of Singapore. They outpaced others like Japan and the United States.

Botswana, one of Africa's most stable countries and its longest continuous multi-party democracy, is relatively corruption-free, noted a BBC report in January.

But in two-thirds of all countries and regions polled, many were pessimistic that offenders would be held accountable.

WJP spokesman Laura Cochran said the poll showed "62 per cent of individuals worldwide believe that a government official guilty of using public money for personal benefit will go unpunished".

They believe this is so even where evidence of wrongdoing is strong and the matter is in the media.

"The survey results suggest that consequence-free corruption is a widespread, corrosive force on governments around the globe," she added.

The project polled people from 99 countries and regions, asking what would happen if a government official was caught taking public money for his own benefit, and this was made public.

The worst performers included Uzbekistan, Argentina and Pakistan, where only 3 to 17 per cent of people thought the offenders would be made accountable.

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