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January 27, 2020

TI Pakistan statement creates more confusion than simplifying facts

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January 27, 2020

ISLAMABAD: The Transparency International has clarified that Corruption Perception Index (CPI) 2019 has not declared that corruption has increased in Pakistan in 2019. According to political observers, the clarification that was supposed simplify the facts has created more confusion as it is being twisted and misinterpreted.

Transparency International (TI) Pakistan Chairman Advocate Sohail Muzzafar in a press statement clarified that the lowering of Pakistan score by one does not reflect any increase or decrease in corruption as it is within the standard margin of error which is 2.46 percent, and is the case of score lowered from 88 to 87 for Denmark, which is least corrupt country in 2018 as well as 2019.

However, the observers question that the same standard margin of error was applicable previous years as well then why any such clarification was not issued. The same standard margiof error existed when Pakistan was improving its ranking and scores. If this margin of error is applicable now then why it was not applied in the past.

They say that it was beyond one’s comprehension that Pakistan’s score in 2018 was 33, which has reduced to 32 now whereas; the country has declined in world ranking from 117 to 120. This reflects that Pakistan has failed to end or reduce the corrupt practices or corruption in the government departments, and therefore, its ranking has slipped to 120 from 117 in the world ranking. How can a local chapter of Transparency International give clean chit under these circumstances, they question.

The input or the survey data for the preparation of CPI 2019 was obtained from eight survey sources or agencies. Transparency International Pakistan chapter had no role in the preparation of CPI 2019 report. Then how could the local chapter clarify and give clean chit to the government on behalf of its international chapter (Transparency International Berlin), they said.

The TI in its press statement further said that a number of politicians, TV channels and newspapers have misreported the CPI report, and given false figures trying to damage the reputation of Pakistan. In order to set the record right, this press release is being issued.

The TI Pakistan first highlighted what was misreported by the local media. According to the TI Pakistan, the media reported that out of 8 sources used in Pakistan CPI, data of 2016/17 is used by Bertelsmann Stiftung Transformation Index 2020 Code: BF (TI) lower score by 3, and data of 2015/2016/2017 is used by Rule of Law Index 2019 lower score by 2, and that 6 other Sources scores are same as in 2018. “Reality is that Bertelsmann Stiftung Transformation Index 2020 data is not made public, and will be declared in 2020, and only provided to TI for CPI purpose, media report has quoted data of CPI 2018. Rule of Law data was collected between May and November 2018, and RLI 2018 used data was collected between May and December 2017. In fact, BTI score is lower by 4.12 and not 3, and RoL Index score is lower by 2.4 and not 2. And the scores of other 6 sources used in CPI are all different form 2018, scores of 3 sources (WB, PRS,EIU) are increased and in 2 sources (VDP, WEF,GICR) the scores are reduced. 2. One leader said in media that CPI 2019 has rated the government of President Musharraf as most corrupt, of Imran Khan 2nd most corrupt and of PML-N as cleanest and PPP as 2nd cleanest, and TI/TI-Pakistan has engineered CPI 2019. Reality is that CPI 2019 has not given any such rating for Pakistan, nor for any other country. TI does not have its own data input in CPI, and TI Pakistan has no role in making of CPI, nor has any data input in it,” the statement says.

The TI Pakistan has also clarified and said, “Clarification on how CPI is prepared by Transparency International in Germany, and what data is used in CPI. The CPI does not include any data of any survey conducted by Transparency International. 2. CPI is compiled by Transparency International in Berlin and TI-Pakistan has no role in preparation of CPI. 3. CPI aggregates data from 13 different sources of 12 different institutions that provide perception of corruption by business people and country experts of the level of corruption in public sector. 4. Each of scores of the 13 sources included in the CPI is standardised by TI and data is entered in a software, to calculate for the aggregation into the CPI score. The standardisation converts all the data points to a scale of 0-100 where a 0 represents the highest level of perceived corruption, and 100 the lowest level of perceived corruption, 5. CPI 2019 for Pakistan has used data of 8 sources”.

Advocate Sohail Muzaffar, TI Pakistan Chairman also said that in the press release of CPI 2019 on Jan 23, 2019, TI Pakistan has praised the increased anti-corruption efforts of present government, and under its rule, better performance of present setup of NAB.

The government has rejected the TI’s annual Corruption Perceptions Index (CPI) 2019. While addressing a press conference in Islamabad the other day, Special Assistant to Prime Minister on Information and Broadcasting Dr Firdous Ashiq Awan termed the report that revealed corruption has soared in 2019 in Pakistan as biased.

She demanded to expose the suspicious criteria of TI’s listing of countries in its corruption index.

“We can only laugh over the TI report as it is not fair, free and against transparency. We are rejecting it as we have serious concerns over the report.” The special adviser said the present government will continue its struggle for bringing reformations, on the other hand, beneficiaries of the corrupt system will remain defending each other.

“Institutions like Moody’s are praising the economic statistics of the present government. However, such reports like TI cannot mislead the world.” She continued that PM Imran Khan has aimed to uproot corruption from the system and the nation could be fooled through such tactics.