To End Poverty, You Have to End Corruption

To End Poverty, You Have to End Corruption

Posted: 12/09/2013 9:31 am

Huguette Labelle

Corruption and poverty unfortunately go hand-in-hand, threatening the lives of too many people. In countries where people are forced to bribe to get essential services like health and water the toll can be horrifying. Eight times more women die having children in places where more than 60 per cent of people report paying bribes, compared to countries where bribery rates are less than 30 per cent.

That's 482 women dying for every 100,000 births in more corrupt countries, compared to 57 deaths where bribery is less. The rate goes down to less than 10 deaths per 100,000 in many developed countries.

The effects of corruption are personal and they are devastating. Corruption leaves children without mothers, families without healthcare, people without food, the elderly without security, and businesses without capital.

That is why on December 9, the tenth anniversary of International Anti-Corruption Day, we need to make sure that the message is sounded loud and clear: you can't beat poverty if you don't stop corruption.

When corruption is held in check, however, there is a measurable development dividend. Our research at Transparency International, the global anti-corruption movement, shows that less bribery means less maternal mortality, better literacy among young people and better access to sanitation.


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