Australia and Transparency International working together to fight corruption
28 May, 2012
TI reports that in post-conflict Sri Lanka, gains in security and safety following the end of the war with the Tamil Tigers have not been accompanied by advances in governance and transparency. TI Sri Lanka is raising public awareness of the problem. Here, people are showing their support for the fight against corruption by signing a poster committing to building a corruption free country. TI Sri Lanka is one of the national chapters to receive funding through AusAID’s support of TI. Photo: Transparency International
Australia is increasing its support for Transparency International’s (external website) efforts to help people overcome poverty by fighting corruption with a new global partnership.
Transparency International Chair, Huguette Labelle, recently signed an agreement with AusAID that includes an $11 million contribution over four years, increasing the total commitment from Australia to more than $18 million. While in Canberra Ms Labelle gave a public address to highlight the important work her organisation is doing with the support of donors like Australia.
Australia’s support will build on years of collaboration with Transparency International in the Asia Pacific and assist the organisation to expand its corruption fighting work in Africa and Latin America.
What is Transparency International?
Transparency International is a global civil society organisation leading the fight against corruption. Through more than 90 Chapters worldwide and an international secretariat in Berlin, Transparency International raises awareness of the damaging effects of corruption and works with partners in government, business and civil society to develop and implement effective measures to tackle it.
Why is transparency important?
Corruption has the greatest impact on the poor, who are often unable to pay bribes for basic services. Transparency International’s research (PDF, exernal website) reveals one-in-four people worldwide have reported paying a bribe for access to things we in Australia take for granted, like clean water or maternal health care.
Tackling corruption helps to strengthen economic growth and social development, guards against resources being diverted away from important services like schools, hospitals and roads, and leads to more accountable, open and responsive governments.
This additional support will help Transparency International to continue to strengthen citizen engagement against corruption, empowering communities to advocate for more transparent and accountable government. Australian support will help Transparency International build its networks, involve youth in fighting corruption and operate advocacy and legal advice centres.
Australia has helped Transparency International to establish 60 legal advice centres in 50 countries, which have helped respond to more than 95,000 complaints about corruption since 2003.
Leading the way in transparency
In November 2011, Australia strengthened its own commitment to effective and transparent aid by launching a Transparency Charter, which commits AusAID to the online publication of detailed information on the work of Australia's aid program. The Charter will make Australia one of the most transparent aid donors in the world.
Australia is leading by example, working with Transparency International to fight corruption and ensure a fair go for the world’s poor.
Transparency International Zimbabwe fights bribery in maternal health services
In Zimbabwe, Transparency International (TI) learned that nurses in a local hospital were charging women $5 every time they screamed while giving birth, as a penalty for raising a false alarm. Women who refused or were unable to pay their delivery fees were detained at the hospital, and charged interest on their debt until they settled it.
TI Zimbabwe pressed the issue with several government officials including the Deputy Prime Minister. After meeting with TI Zimbabwe, he called on the Minister of Health to carry out an investigation as part of a broader review of the national health system.
Since then TI Zimbabwe has received no further complaints from women in the area and has remained in close contact with local residents to ensure that this situation is not reversed.
More examples of Transparency International’s work
Transparency International (external website)
Transparency International’s Global Corruption Barometer 2010 (PDF, external website)
AusAID’s Transparency Charter
Last Reviewed: 28 May, 2012