The chairman of the CPP’s finance and banking commission has challenged a new corruption survey by Transparency International (TI) that found Cambodians perceive their country to be highly corrupt.
The survey conducted last year and released on February 20 placed Cambodia in the highest corruption category based on the number of respondents claiming to have paid bribes.
Seventy-two percent of Cambodians interviewed in September 2007 by TI said they had bribed a public servant in the previous year, the second highest ranking behind Cameroon of 62 countries surveyed last year. Sixty-one percent of respondents said they did not expect to see a decrease in corruption within the next three years, with 42 percent saying they expect corruption to increase.
Cheam Yeap, chairman of the finance and banking commission for the ruling CPP, said Transparency International had every right to conduct the survey but releasing an assessment of corruption that is not accurate “would affect the honor of our country.”
“I think TI should provide evidence of its allegations,” he said. “I agree that there is corruption but it is an individual issue, not the whole country.”
The survey rated the judicial system and police department as the two most corrupt authorities. It said 45 percent of those who had dealings with the legal system and 62 percent of those who had contact with police within the past year admitting paying bribes for services.
The registry and permit department also rated high. TI surveyed 1016 people in four provinces – Battambang, Siem Reap, Kampong Cham and Sihanoukville – and Phnom Penh municipality.