News - Afghanistan
Afghanistan is perceived to have one of the most corrupt public sectors in the world out of 176 countries surveyed, according to a report from Transparency International released Wednesday.
Afghanistan tops the Corruption Perception Index along with North Korea in Asia and Somalia in Africa.
The report said that one in seven Afghans has paid a bribe while the Kabul Bank scandal greatly increased perceptions of the vast corruption in the country.
The report said that government efforts to eliminate corruption have been in vain and that corruption has only increased in the country.
The Afghan government responded that major efforts are underway to bring the level of the corruption down.
"As the government and anti-corruption bodies increase, it helps to have the transparency watchdogs showing the increased level of corruption," Policy and Technical Deputy Director of the High Office of Oversight and Anti Corruption Mohammed Amin Khoramji told TOLOnews on Wednesday.
The average bribe paid by each Afghan amounts to one-third the normal salary of a government employee, or $150 month.
The Coalition of Afghan Women to Fight Corruption protested on Wednesday to oppose the rising corruption in the country and demanded a stable and corruption free Afghanistan in the future.
"We have started this effort and will continue it even if it costs us our lives," Amina Mustaqim, a member of the coalition, told TOLOnews.
"We want our children to live in a peaceful, secure and corruption free country."
The report said that weak governance, impunity, fraud in elections, government-dominated justice sector, unnecessary detentions, extortion, and illegal killing with impunity all contribute to the increase of corruption.
The report also said that as much as $8 billion has been embezzled in the past decade from Afghanistan as a result of the high level of corruption in the country.
Regionally, India was ranked 94, Iran 133, Pakistan 139, and Turkmenistan and Uzbekistan were equal at 170.