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This topic contains 17 replies, has 17 voices, and was last updated by  Emushgirmish 8 months, 3 weeks ago.

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  • #20057
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    Damian Indij
    Keymaster

    Welcome to our last discussion forum!

    Consider the following two statements:

    1. “Corruption greases the wheels of development and make things happen!”

    Vs.

    2. “Corruption hinders development and will make it much more difficult and more expensive to reach the SDGs!”

    – What is your view on the statements?
    – How come that many water stakeholders do not acknowledge, or are not aware of the problems and negative development impacts of corruption?
    – What in your view are the 2 most important actions to build a more integer water sector?
    – What can the government do? What can private sector do? What can civil society do?

  • #20154
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    Hmaidi
    Participant

    Corruption hinders development and will make it much more difficult and more expensive to reach the SDGs! this is a true statement but can only be given this judgment by those who considers water and wastewater services are linked to development. this issue (linkages) is not usually discussed or even considered by service providers.
    on the one hand, it is still true that not all countries are committed to SDGs, or are only committed at the national levels but not at service provision level. on the other hand, knowledge limitations of roles and responsibilities, can hinder such a linkage or considerations.
    on how come that many water stakeholders do not acknowledge, or are not aware of the problems and negative development impacts of corruption is simply due to limited interaction and communication among stakeholders, and that monitoring reports, if at all available, does not cover either impacts or mitigation measures. when we have presented gray areas or potential risk areas for integrity in water and sanitation services, most participants declared that these were new to them; and when you link to development, it is much more complicated to most of SP, neither knowledge, nor personnel or tools are there.
    as for the actions, we all know that a number of SDGs indicators are linked to water, this includes poverty irradiation and mainly access to resources, with this we talk about participation, equality and fairness. then health and well being, directly related to water, SDG 5: Gender equity also applies for water, SDG6 directly on access and sustainability of water and wastewater services, SDG 8, 9 and 13 are all related. based on this, actions to be taken includes clarification at the service provision levels the linkages, important and impacts of water on development, and then empowering those on the service provision on how to achieve the goals and targets.

    all stakeholders have a role; when we consider SDG 9 related to resilient infrastructure including water, this a key pillar to encourage the private sector to be involved in water and wastewater services. SDG13 related to climate change, NGOs can do a lot on strategies and action plans adaptations as well as awareness for the above issues

  • #20181
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    alvinwacha
    Participant

    I would like to strongly agree with the second statement of corruption hindering development and making it more expensive to reach the SDGs. From the statistics given in the water integrity global out look 2016 is very evident in the amount of money that is lost per financial year due to corruption tendencies and the opportunity that is lost due to intended service delivery that is missed especially for those that greatly need it like the children, women , the urban poor and also considering the pivotal role the water sector has got in achieving all the other SDGs.
    I think many stakeholders are not aware of the extent of the problem due to the limited spread of this vital information or are simply not acknowledging the problem because they could be deeply involved in the corruption tendencies and are confortable with the status quo or simply because corruption is so enshrined in their communities that it actually seems legitimate.
    I think the 2 most important actions to build a more integer water sector are to 1, have general consensus by all in the sector that there is a problem and it urgently needs to be addressed by all in the sector playing a pivotal role in creating awareness, enhancing accountability at all levels, participation of all involved and also government providing the enabling environment for the rest of the sector members to work against corruption by providing the laws, policies and guidelines, the institutional frameworks and ensure enforcement to bring culprits to book. Enforcement is very important because most of these requirements are in place but not active. The private sector like contractors should desist from promoting the corruption tendency as its their continued promotion of the vice that lets it grow and finally the civil society can provide the much needed advocacy for anti corruption, promotion of transparency.

  • #20184
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    aba_diallo
    Participant

    1. Corryption greasses the wheel of development and make things happen for a very few people. Those rich people because of the corruption do not invest to create an added value to the society in any field. It is a dirty money that they are hiding instead of adressing a need through a business midel. The worst is that those people are use to luxury and in the same time think a non-corrupted system is too slow to sustain their life style.

    2. Corruption hinders development and will make it much more difficult and more expensive to reach the SDGs!
    The data speak themselves, corruption costs a lot. This dirty money is not invested back in the country mist if the time. It is like we are contantly trying to fill a bag open in the bottom. The difficulty is manly that the same bids will open years after years because the job is badly done and everybody is silent because wet. The corruption is now an engineered cycle till thise involved can predict they “monthly/annually extras” for years. The main decision at office are taken according the corruption potential. As an employees decided to be clean at the beginning. But with no promotion or evolution, they finally slip into corruption and are litterally diving in it: “adapt or die”. One of the main difficulties stands in corruption getting into the dna as everybody seeing it. “I am not stupid” people will say. In other words if he is getting rich that without any hurt why I would not too? Ex: I just bribe water utility staff to get my house connected to drinking water network, so as policeman I will take kickback if anybody overstep traffic lights. The fact everybody is into corruption make normal, accepted and written in the dna.

    -How come that many water stakeholders do not acknowledge, or are not aware of the problems and negative development impacts of corruption?
    Stakeholder are not aware of negative aspects of corruption because they need capacity building and benchmark. Capacity building because it is easier for trained people to see the sustainability beyond the day to day life (a sustainable development is better than 10 EUR payoff everyday..
    Benchmark is a perfect inspiration for stakeholders as goid inspiration. That is to say that stakeholder have to see good systems that work for everybody and the development witout any corruption. For example after a benchmark of Dutch Integrated Water Ressource Management, anybody would be jealous to apply as example.

    -What in your view are the 2 most important actions to build a more integer water sector?
    Accountability and strong civil society could be key actions for me. If the laws apply correctly, surely severals example of corrupted people in jail or whatever will arise. Then normal people will think (a lot) before getting involved into corruption (that doesn’t seem worthwhile). Civil society can be the watchdog because the temptation is high for every stakeholder to break the rules.

    -What can the government do? What can private sector do? What can civil society do?
    The government should adapt policy and apply justice.
    Private sector as well as civil society could be whistle blowers to point out bad behaviors.

  • #20189
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    Ayebale
    Participant

    Hello every one,
    On statement 1, “Corruption greases the wheels of development and make things happen!”, This statement holds true for those with corrupt minds of concetrating on individual growth but puts the inferior and maginalised at a greater risk, this the evil thinking we should fight.

    On statement 2, “Corruption hinders development and will make it much more difficult and more expensive to reach the SDGs!” I agree with this statement postively,
    To achieve /and or to reach SDGs, corruption should not be part of the process, Reaching SDGs means participation of the highest degree where every body is on board from top to bottom, transparency and accountability are highly affected and yet they gear the way to SDGs.

    How come that many water stakeholders do not acknowledge, or are not aware of the problems and negative development impacts of corruption?
    This is because they are always not allowed to fully participate in all processes of a development program and even if they were allowed to participate, there are aspects where they will not understand whats going on. This also means capacity building should always be at the finger tips of anay partner.

    What in your view are the 2 most important actions to build a more integer water sector?
    Transparency and Accountability are important but they help well when all levels of stakeholders are capacity built and well involved.

    What can the government do? What can private sector do? What can civil society do?
    Government can always follow up follow up on policies and strengthen institutions
    Civil societies can can always see the way to work with government instutions and also gear up the policies.

  • #20193
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    Eman Rahamtalla
    Participant

    The second statement is true that corruption hindering development and making it more expensive to reach the SDGs. Many development projects are stopped due to corruption. Because of the bad managers the money was eaten by political officials, which has been brought and spend it for other uses. Also there are not good governments to apply clear policies to fight the corruption.
    How come that many water stakeholders do not acknowledge, or are not aware of the problems and negative development impacts of corruption?
    Because they were not involved in any development projects and not allowed for them to participate in all the decisions. That means they do not understand the policies. They may be involved in corruption without any awareness.
    What in your view are the 2 most important actions to build a more integer water sector?
    Participation and Accountability are important but will be achieved when all the civil societies, private sector and stakeholders are well involved

  • #20203
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    Kassim
    Participant

    Both statements are true depending on which side of the coin you belong to, i.e. for corruption or anti-corruption. For those that support corruption and engages in it to their benefit, may agree with the first statement and even if they disagree will still indulge in it. However the people with integrity, honesty and positive morals will only agree with the second statement.
    Many stakeholders are not aware of the problems and negative development impacts of corruption because the political will to uproot corruption is lacking. The people in the helm of affairs who can trigger mechanisms that will make stakeholders become conscious of the negative impact of corruption are themselves largely involved in corruption or are beneficiaries of this negative acts.
    The most important actions is to ensure transparency and accountability at all level across all relevant sectors.
    Government must have the political will to prioritize and uproot corruption by indicting corrupt officials through the establishment of anti-corruption policies and enforcing the implementation of the policies. The private sector must resist from condoning in corrupt acts with government officials, and must support government to prevent corruption by reporting corrupt officials. Civil society should advocate for zero tolerance for corruption by holding both government and private sector accountable.

  • #20210
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    aba_diallo
    Participant

    Also, in my opinion the OECD principles do not give enough room to whistle blowers, accountability that are part key (huge part of the solution)

  • #20227
    Profile picture of
    haditabbara
    Participant

    1. “Corruption greases the wheels of development and make things happen!”

    Vs.

    2. “Corruption hinders development and will make it much more difficult and more expensive to reach the SDGs!”

    – What is your view on the statements?
    Corruption does not grease the wheels of development but it reverses the gear of development. Indeed it hinders development at all levels- economic, sociological and environmental. Although it might appear for the uninformed that sometimes a bribe “get things going”, it does so at the expense of the poor and the marginalized.

    – How come that many water stakeholders do not acknowledge, or are not aware of the problems and negative development impacts of corruption?
    Corruption is not new, it is there since the dawn of civilization and water stakeholders are the last to acknowledge it because of the lack of education of what constitutes corruption. Capacity building that focuses on the sector itself is not adequate. Water pollution is largely due to corruption and we must link corruption to health and furnish data on how many lives are lost due to corruption, not just how much money is wasted.

    – What in your view are the 2 most important actions to build a more integer water sector?
    Capacity building, Social Accountability

    – What can the government do? What can private sector do? What can civil society do?
    Governments can introduce reforms that ensure TAP. Private Sector and international donors can withhold aid money conditional upon government reforms that address corruption, and civil society can act as watchdog demanding participation at the municipal, city, and state levels

  • #20246
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    mayhps
    Participant

    “Corruption greases the wheels of development and make things happen! Vs “Corruption hinders development and will make it much more difficult and more expensive to reach the SDGs!”

    – Both are not wrong statement. In my view, corruption is present there as usual even though we, government try to disappear in the future. It always present in many kinds of ways in the matter of social, economic, environment and political sector.

    – Many water stakeholders are actually aware of the impacts of corruption but in some levels, to get benefits that is we want, they have to make some investment in the desired things. That’s why it become like that stakeholders are not aware of corruption.

    – The two most important actions are (1) to give open and easy access to do water related things and make clear organizational structure (2) To make decentralization in water governance and to have accountability and responsibility.

    – Government can make the clear decentralized governance structure. Private sector can do researching and making the future scenarios and then welcoming investment. Civil society can make suggestion and participating in decision making by raising their voices.

  • #20255
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    Hakan.Tropp
    Participant

    Dear Workshop participants,

    many thanks for your comments and insights. Below I will reflect, respond and also provide some new questions for your consideration.

    What are the impacts of corruption? One comment aptly pointed to “adapt or die”. This illustrates the sinister logic of corruption in environments where corruption is rampant and where it can be very difficult to break out from it. The goal is to make corruption the exception rather than the rule!

    It is indeed correct that there are a lot of costs associated with corrupt practices hindering policies and institutions to function in intended ways and sustainable water uses and practices.

    While we all know that corruption can be rampant in many contexts, there is still a need to improve data on the social, economic and ecological impacts of corrupt practices. Some economic data can be assessed relatively easy, such as % of kick-backs in contracting, or how much funding that “leaks out” of a government budget. There are methods of water integrity risk assessments, budget-tracking as well as public expenditure tracking methodologies that can be used for estimations of some of the economic impacts. However, there should be more work done to quantify “indirect costs” of corruption such as:
    – Sub-standard constructions (using low quality cement or other materials, not drilling a bore-well to the depth specified, and more)
    – The cost of users being deprived of water. For example, if a farmer does not get his or her fair share of irrigated water it can threaten the household income in severe ways. If a family is deprived of household it can mean serious health issues, lowered productivity and even loss of life.
    – The costs of water pollution. Pollution affects human and ecological health and to immense costs of ‘clean-ups” that we currently push to future generations to pay.

    The above are examples and there can of course be even more indirect costs. Importantly, the lack of data and hard facts should not refrain us from acting and taking measures but to be able to build a more solid case and to take appropriate measures we also need to improve our knowledge on corruption and its impacts on society and nature, as well as what measures that may be more effective than others.

    One challenge as I see it, is that few are willing to invest in increased and improved data in relation to corruption and anti-corruption impacts and measures. Are there ways where resources can be mobilized in unconventional ways, such as through crowd-funding, or by setting in place higher level funds. Can we set in place an equivalent of the global Green climate fund but for promoting anti-corruption?

    What can we do to break the vicious cycle of corruption? You have pointed to many means such as increased Transparency, Accountability and Participation (TAP), capacity building, bench-marking, clear organisational structures, the role of broad based dialogues among all stakeholder (and the role of CS as watchdogs). One point missing is the role of media. I believe that media can have a very strong role to hold decision-makers to account. Another point is the importance of a well functioning judiciary system. While prevention work can go a long we we also need systems that kick in and can prosecute once corruption is detected and exposed. In essence, double governance work is needed: a) we need to “corruption-proof” water sector; and b) horizontal governance institutions (the judiciary, auditor general’s office, procurement offices, anti-corruption commissions, Ombudsmen office, etc) all need to be functional to assist any sector in its work to “corruption-proof” activities. For example for a whistle-blower programme to function would require that protection needs to be guaranteed. Sadly, in most cases whistle-blowers themselves get in to huge troubles and many times have to pay dearly for blowing the whistle.

    What role do you see for media? We seem to live in an era of “fake-news” which some politicians and decision-makers can make use of to their own advantages. How can we better make sure that facts stay facts and not compromised by politicians or other decision-makers?

    I look forward to your insights and further debates. Best, Hakan

  • #20260
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    Lorna
    Participant

    I agree with aba_diabblo where he says that the first statement is only beneficial to a few people, the privileged in society.

    The second statement is true. Because only a few people benefit from corruption it is expensive. For example in the provision of water pipes, the people could provide sub-standard pipes and pocket the rest of the money. These pipes would have to be replaces so frequently, the amount would rise to be more than what would have been initially spent. Water stakeholders do acknowledge and are aware of the negative impacts of corruption service but the main issue with many community members is apathy or the fear of being the whistle blower and having negative repercussions as mentioned by Hakkan Trop.
    I believe to start the conversation (awareness) and make it a common topic like HIV. Create ripples among the citizens (help them understand their water rights)
    The government has the responsibility of being open/ transparent and involving the stakeholders while the private sector and CSOs have the responsibility of holding the government accountable for their actions.

  • #20269
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    CarolinaZijda
    Participant

    Good evening –

    a) Through corruption precious resources meant for a specific purpose are being misappropriated – therefore it hinders the development agenda. It’s no greasing of wheels, just getting stuck in mud!
    b) Many water stakeholders may not acknowledge the problems because they benefit from the situation remaining the way it is.
    – @ Kassim: ‘the political will to uproot corruption is lacking’ – yes, and in many cases those who want to make a positive change are being frustrated.
    c) Provide policies that serve all citizens and if necessary do reforms. Off course proper execution and implementation of these is also required. Key to the process is TAP.
    d) Government and / or private sector could have an anti-corruption ‘act’ as part of their over all ‘code of conduct’ in a particular department or institution as whole that each person working there should be aware of. It can be made part of the company culture.

    Thanks all for sharing your thoughts, C

  • #20278
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    sameer.abusaoud
    Participant

    “Corruption greases the wheels of development and make things happen!”. People think this is the case in most underdeveloped countries. Unfortunately, a portion of this is true. But, when looking at the whole picture, the opposite is true. Corruption consumes a large portion of funds, leading to destruction instead of development.

    “Corruption hinders development and will make it much more difficult and more expensive to reach the SDGs!”. For sure. Sustainable development will be just a dream when corruption is there. We can see that most of the mega projects in the Arab World for instance lack sustainability and can’t make it’s share in the development of countries. Such countries for sure can’t catch up SDG’s targets.

    stakeholders do not are not aware of the problems and negative development impacts of corruption because of bad and miscommunication. Communication channels are not sufficient, and stakeholders especially consumers are not an integral part of the decision making process in the water sector. If governments treat consumers as a pivotal group, things will certainly change positively.

    The 2 most important actions to build a more integer water sector is good communication and the participation of all stakeholders as they are the real protectors of Integrity.

  • #20334
    Profile picture of
    mghema
    Participant

    “Corruption greases the wheels of development and make things happen!” – Most often, Yes true in short term, as it generate motives and champions to carry out the tasks. the project are implemented very fast, approval are quick, relationships are good and moving very smoothly. but long term this create many problems.

    “Corruption hinders development and will make it much more difficult and more expensive to reach the SDGs!” always true in long term, as it generate garbage where quality infrasturue needed. there will not general economic return on the investment and create vicious circle which eventually collapse the whole system.

  • #20336
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    George
    Participant

    Corruption greases the wheel of development and make things work to people with questionable integrity operating in systems without transparency, accountability and participation. This makes the vast majority left out of the so called development agenda. The corrupt system expects the larger society to indulge in corruption when many members of the society can not raise bribes, thus forcing them to be left out of the perceived development. As a result, they are cut out of critical services, yet they are the ones in dire need of the same services. This often leave society with limited access to services forcing them to get the same service at higher costs, hence making the general society more poorer.

  • #20348
    Profile picture of
    Temple Oraeki
    Participant

    Corruption is a clog in the wheel of development. Stakeholders in the water sector who are aware of the corruption ongoing in the sector will not acknowledge it because its a means of accumulating wealth for them whereas others are scared of acknowledging it for fear of been relieved of their jobs. those who are not aware of the corruption (mainly foot soldiers) are left in the dark because there is no transparency in the sector.

    Any government that is serious about fighting corruption in the water sector should start by passing a Freedom of Information law that will allow the general public demand for necessary data and info from relevant water agencies. The CSOs should then leverage on the Freedom of Information bill to approach Water Agencies and demand for their executed projects based on the allocated resources from the national budget.

  • #20382
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    Emushgirmish
    Participant

    As it has been frequently said, the Immense impact of corruption is much more than beyond an economic growth as it will diminish the service delivery in each sector. Equal wealth distribution will be missed and mostly it is also one of the conflict raising means. It can immensely undermine social capital and trust, among human beings and can also lead democratic rights and the rule of law.

    The means, that corruption definitely hinders to reach the SDG as most of the money will go for personal use which has no linkage with the development activity. In my country the government declare that recently there is about 1.3 billion USD corruption from a big Dam construction, called Renaissance dam(water reservoir) construction and it is officially treated in the court. In any case the money is used for different use and in efficient way.

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