Fiji drops 2 scores; New Government a hope to improve corruption index – Transparency International

Image: Transparency International

A new coalition Government in Fiji offers some hope that the country will improve its Corruption Perceptions Index (CPI) for 2023, states Transparency International.

In its 2022 CPI released yesterday, Fiji dropped two scores from 55 to 53, showing the country has not fared well.

The Corruption Perceptions Index (CPI) ranks 180 countries and territories by their perceived levels of public sector corruption and analyses the connection between conflict, security and corruption.

“Fiji (53) offers some hope for the future, despite the warning sign of a two point drop this year,” states the report.

In 2022, the government began attacks on the free press, threatening to fine or even imprison journalists for publishing material “contrary to the public or national interest”.

“A new election law also gave supervisors extraordinary powers and limited free speech.

“However, the December elections produced a new coalition Government, ending the 16-year rule of previous coup leader prime minister Frank Bainimarama.

“The new Prime Minister and Government have already begun to implement a 100-day plan that includes provisions to protect media freedom and whistleblowing.”

Fiji’s ranking has also fallen from 45 out of 180 nations last year to 49 out of 184 nations this year.

“While a fall of two points (implying an increase in corruption) might not seem to be statistically significant, it highlights the urgent need for civil society, the business sector, the media and all stakeholders to work together with Fiji’s anti-corruption agency.”

Transparency International states a country’s score is the perceived level of public sector corruption on a scale of 0-100, where 0 means highly corrupt and 100 means very clean.

From the region, New Zealand has been found to be the third least corrupt country in the world while Australia has been ranked as the 12th least corrupt in the world.

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