Transparency International paints bleak picture of humongous corruption in Africa in latest report

Although we are headquartered in Washington D.C. USA, our reporters and editors are working around the globe to cover what you care about. Click here to become one of our members and help us keep our quality news free and available for all.

The numbers on corruption in Africa are in. Despite boasts and false claims by African leaders, from Nigeria to Equatorial Guinea, that they were doing so much to fight gargantuan corruption that had paralyzed their economies and widened inequality gaps at the same time the super rich were crisscrossing the world in private jets, Transparency International made it clear in its latest perceptions index report, that Sub-Saharan Africa has remained a highly corrupt continent, the most corrupt on earth.

As the lowest-scoring region on the Corruption Perception Index or CPI, with an average of 32 over 100, Sub-Saharan Africa’s performance paints a bleak picture of inaction against corruption, TI said in its latest damning but honest report, at least for millions of Africans who go to bed with empty stomachs and with neither electricity nor other basic amenities of life.

The not so surprising report for ordinary Africans was released on Thursday.

In it, TI said at the bottom of the index are Somalia 9 over 100, South Sudan 12 over 100, Sudan 16 over 100, Equatorial Guinea also 16 over 100, Cameroon 25 over 100 and Nigeria 26 over 100.

Nigeria, Equatorial Guinea, South Sudan and Cameroon are beneficiaries of petrodollars, and TI said there seems to be a correlation between big money and big corruption.

But there is some glimmer of hope on the continent. With a score of 66, the Seychelles earns the highest mark in the region, followed by Botswana (61), Cabo Verde (58), Rwanda (53) and Mauritius (52).

Those countries seem, however, to be the exception that confirms the pervasive corruption rule.

TI said in a statement that while the Seychelles struggles with issues of money laundering, which is not measured by the CPI, several anti-corruption laws, including a recent access to information law, and a newly established anti-corruption commission have helped strengthen the country’s anti-corruption framework. In addition, despite some restrictions, dialogue between civil society and government occurs through a national civil society platform.

TI added: “Significant improvers since 2012, Cote d’Ivoire (35) and Senegal (45) still have much work to do. The political will demonstrated by the leaders of both countries, which saw a number of key legal, policy and institutional reforms implemented in their early days in office, has been on a backslide since 2016.

Check highlights of the report below


Since 2012, several countries, including Congo (19), Liberia (28), Madagascar (24) and Malawi (31) have significantly declined on the CPI. Congo has been the subject of repeated reports of money laundering and embezzlement of public funds by the country’s political elite with no action taken by national authorities.

In Madagascar, despite a 2018 constitutional court ruling against electoral amendments favouring the incumbent president and cited as unconstitutional, judicial independence remains a concern. More recently, the national anti-corruption agency began legal action against more than half of the country’s parliamentarians, who stand accused of taking bribes.


Towards the bottom of the index, with a score of 18, the Democratic Republic of Congo (DRC) faces several corruption challenges. According to our recent report, Global Corruption Barometer – Africa, political integrity among government officials is extremely low, with 79 per cent of DRC citizens believing that all or most parliamentarians are involved in corruption.

With the lowest score on the CPI, Somalia is not only one of the world’s most corrupt countries, but it is also, “one of the world’s most protracted cases of statelessness” according to the 2016 Bertelsmann Stiftung Transformation Index. State fragility and poor rule of law have left gaping holes for graft to flourish from petty bribery to high-level political corruption.

Tackling corruption in the context of fragile states presents unique challenges, as fragility is both a cause and an effect of any downward trends in development. With plans underway in Somalia to hold the first “one person-one vote” election in fifty years, it is critical that political accountability structures to facilitate anti-corruption mechanisms are put in place.


Across the region, money is used to win elections, consolidate power and further personal interests. Although the African Union Convention on Preventing and Combatting Corruption has provisions to prevent corruption and encourage transparency in campaign financing, implementation is weak.


Following a change of regime in 2017, the Angolan government introduced a set of governance reforms to crack down on corruption.

Following four decades of authoritarian rule, Angola (26) jumped seven points in this year’s CPI, making it a significant improver. However, given its overall low score, the country is still well below the global average of 43.

Isabel Dos Santos, the former president’s daughter, who is also known as “Africa’s richest woman”, was fired from her job as head of the state oil and gas firm, Sonangol, months after President Lourenço’s election. In December 2019, as investigations into corruption allegations progressed, an Angolan court ordered a freeze of Dos Santos’s assets.

Although the country has recovered US$5 billion in stolen assets, more needs to be done to strengthen integrity and promote transparency in accounting for oil revenue.


Given recent scandals, corruption is expected to feature prominently in electoral debates during the upcoming elections in 2020. 

Known as a beacon of democracy in West Africa, Ghana dropped seven points on the CPI since 2014, moving from 48 in 2014 to 41 in 2019. Revelations of bribery in Ghana’s high court in 2015 and the murder of investigative journalist Ahmed Hussein-Suale in early 2019 cast serious doubts on the country’s anti- corruption efforts.

Despite these developments, there is hope for change. In 2017, the Office of Special Prosecutor was established, which has the power to investigate and prosecute cases of corruption. In 2019, a right to information bill was also passed. These efforts, combined with the enhanced performance of the Auditor General’s office, offer hope for improvement.

Read full article

Simon Ateba
Simon Ateba
Based in Washington, District of Columbia, United States of America, Simon leads a brilliant team of reporters, freelance journalists, analysts, researchers and contributors from around the world to run TODAY NEWS AFRICA as editor-in-chief. Simon Ateba's journalistic experience spans over 10 years and covers many beats, including business and investment, information technology, politics, diplomacy, human rights, science reporting and much more. Write him: [email protected]



Please enter your comment!
Please enter your name here

Trending Now


239 scientists from over 30 countries urge WHO to tell the world about airborne spread of coronavirus

At least 239 scientists from over 30 countries are urging the World Health Organization to address the airborne transmission of COVID-19, a...

SEE IT: Certified true copy of the conviction of Nigeria’s House of Representatives Speaker Femi Gbajabiamila in the United States for $25,000 theft

The Speaker of the Nigerian House of Representatives Femi Gbajabiamila was convicted in the state of Georgia in the United States...

WHO warns access to HIV medicines severely impacted by COVID-19 as AIDS response stalls

Seventy-three countries have warned that they are at risk of stock-outs of antiretroviral (ARV) medicines as a result of the COVID-19...

Nigeria’s anti-corruption czar Ibrahim Magu who was arrested for financial fraud on Monday expected to be arraigned in court and removed from office after night in police custody

Nigeria's anti-corruption czar Ibrahim Magu who was arrested for alleged financial fraud on Monday is expected to be arraigned in...

Coronavirus update: Zambia, Ivory Coast and Malawi

Coronavirus numbers keep changing in Africa where more than 6200 people have now died and more than 233000 have contracted the...
- Advertisement -


African Development Bank forecasts economic turmoil for East Africa in 2020 amid COVID-19 pandemic with growth shrinking from 5 percent to 0.2 percent in worst-case scenario

The African Development Bank has forecast an economic turmoil for East Africa in 2020 amid COVID-19 pandemic, with projected growth tumbling...

Nigeria presidency releases statement on the suspension of anti-corruption czar Ibrahim Magu, says no one is above the law

The Nigerian presidency on Saturday evening released a statement on the suspension of Ibrahim Magu, the acting chairman of the Economic...

African Development Bank forecasts economic tumult for West Africa in 2020 amid COVID-19. Growth to shrink by 2 percent

Economic growth in West Africa, which was poised to expand by 4.0 percent in 2020, following growth of 3.6 percent in...

South African president declares special provincial official funeral for late Queen Noloyiso killed by COVID-19

President Cyril Ramaphosa of South Africa has declared a Special Official Funeral Category 1 as a final farewell for the late...

African Development Bank President Akinwumi Adesina pens emotional tribute to late Ivory Coast Prime Minister Amadou Gon Coulibaly

July 8 was all like every normal day, focused on work. I had no inkling there would be a storm, even...


Read full article

error: Alert: Content is protected !!