Breating fire into the fight against corruption

The assault mounted against corruption could hardly come anywhere near success if the government is single handed in carrying out the uphill battle. The fact that, more often, this evil act is carried out on the sly makes the fight against it a rocky one.


To insulate themselves from suspicion and to dupe citizens, some government employees that run the gamut from a minister to a clerk are active in vehemently denouncing corruption in the open while foxily taking bribes.


The corrupt have a tongue of honey but a heart of gal. They daily fatten at the cost of millions badly in need of bare necessities.


Instead of tapping the government that appointed them on the back corrupt officials stab it on the back tarnishing its image by displeasing service seekers, enthusiastic to see good governance see the day’s light in their country during their life span.


Needless to say, unless addressed in good time the absence of good governance could scare away potential supporters of the ruling party. Where corruption has turned a challenge gaining popular support is remote in the extreme.


Political crisis results from corruption, one of the symptoms of maladministration. This situation,during political debates affords some opposition parties,often with a bent of elevating a particular instance into a general truth and mud slinging, ample mud to pelt the ruling party with.


It was not with out a mixed feeling of surprise and shock a few months earlier people listened to the corruption case the Ethics and Anti Corruption Commission lodged against 42 alleged conspirators in a corruption network while working as employees in the Custom and Revenue Authority. Astonishingly the director and deputy director were top on the list of the suspects.


Here one could reflect that officials who know the law, more specifically the tax or anti corruption law, could easily get loopholes that enable or embolden them for personal ends. That is exactly what facts on the ground throw light on. This should be heeded well on the ongoing fight against corruption.


Corruption, which has many tentacles, lurks underground. Hence to keep it at bay all eyes must be alert.


Here we must make note that the corruption fight must not be confined to government offices. The sword need also be unsheathed against pilferers in private companies like Banks and Insurances as well as NGOs.


Vampires have to be combed out from every institution to drain out the grotesque mindset that has a contagious effect.


Tightening the law and quaffing the lust of the corrupt in the bud alone may not bring the desired result in arresting corruption. There is a call for rooting out the entrenched mentality. Hence the fight to reverse the tide of corruption has to be backed up by popular support.


It has long become an established fact that Ethiopians spare no effort when it comes to national development. Like bees from their hive, Ethiopians are famous known for standing one when the sovereignty of the nation is put at stake. It is not therefore demanding to get citizens aboard the anti-corruption fight, for many are who tasted the bitterness of this social ill to the full.


Regarding the backing up of the the anti-corruption commission by an all out support, commissioner Ali Suleiman, this week ,had noted the role youth and women organizational set ups put in place in Addis is playing a conspicuous one.


The commissioner also said “Earmarking their own budget, religious institutions, of their own volition, preparing teaching materials and letting us evaluate it sensitize their followers about the wickedness of corruption. They are lending force to the anti -corruption battle.”


The commendable participation of the public in the combing out work done recently in the Tax and Custom Office, the National Bank and the Ethiopian Electric Power Corporation depicts the anti-corruption fight is gathering momentum.

This move apart from ramming home the ugliness of corruption,it has created an ardent passion among citizens to be front line campaigners.


The commission realizing the indispensability of taking citizens on board in the fight against corruption is working on an organizational set up that galvanizes all for action.



This foreshadows success will cup the measures the government is taking to ensure good governance. Regional anti-corruption commissions need replicate the fight nationwide.


For Ethiopia’s renaissance to hack through the undergrowth of corruption that threatens encumbrance and to save the hard-won wealth of the country and also that of citizens from lechers, the commission envisages to redouble anti-corruption fights in revenue&tax collection, land administration and justice delivery.


At a larger scale the commission is fighting corruption and maladministration without partiality bringing before the court of law all suspects including highly posted government officials. Transparency and accountability in the fight will certainly propel the fight.






We have two options. Either to sink into the quagmire of poverty or drain out the quagmire.”


Former Prime Minister Meles Zenawi.