The 11th Edition Rwanda Bribery Index (RBI) 2020 has found a decrease in amounts of cash involved in bribes but also an improvement of the country’s corruption perceptions.
The report, virtually launched by Transparency International Rwanda (TI-Rwanda) office on Thursday, showed that bribes giving trends have reduced to reach a national average of less than Rwf100, 000 from an average of over Rwf150, 000.
The report showed a declining trend of prevalence in bribes from 2017- 2020, coming from 3.28% in 2017, to 2.08% in 2018, and 2% in 2019.
In the reporting period which is 2020 the prevalence stood at 2.5%.
The report also noted that bribes paid to judges has reduced to Rwf48, 000 from Rwf206, 000 in 2018, and Rwf345, 000 in 2019.
However, compared to the previous edition in 2019, key services almost remained in the limelight of taking bribes with the local government taking the lead, followed by traffic police, Rwanda Investigation Bureau (RIB), Banks, and Rwanda Energy Group (REG) in the top five places.
Though controversial in policy implementation, other key services like Technical education, Prosecution, Rwanda Regulatory Authority (RURA), Ministry of Education (with Higher Education council and Rwanda education Board), and Civil Society Organisations, came out with no case of a reported bribe.
In relation to COVID-19, the TI Rwanda said that the pandemic has contributed to reduction in government efforts to fight cases of corruption and focusing on the virus. TI said some people allegedly give bribes to be allowed to breach COVID-19 prevention measures.
This led to a decrease in citizen’s perception of government involvement in curbing corruption from 81.9% in 2019 to 75.6% in 2020.
“This is due to the fact that the anti-corruption drive including the highest leadership of the country was mainly devoted to the containment of the spread of COVID-19 pandemic,” TI-Rwanda said.
Ingabire Marie Imaculée, the Chairperson of TI-Rwanda said that this year, the launch of RBI and CPI 2020 comes at the hard time when the country and the world are facing Covid-19 pandemic which has, in one way or another, negatively impacted the fight against corruption but commended the positive progress achieved by Rwanda.
“More specifically, the current situation of COVID-19 pandemic calls upon all stakeholders to actively engage in empowering citizens, sensitize them to report and assure them of their safety when they report cases of corruption,” Ingabire said.
From home to the Region and Globally, Rwanda’s Corruption Perceptions Index (CPI) stood out again in the best performers.
As per the CPI 2020 released today on the global level, Rwanda’s score increased from 53% to 54% points in 2020.
Rwanda is now 49th on the global rank (from 51st in 2019) and retained the fourth position among the least corrupt countries in the Sub-Saharan Africa.
In the East African region, Rwanda again emerged in first place with 54%, followed by Tanzania (49th with 38%), Kenya (94th with 31%), Uganda (142nd with 27%), Burundi and DRC (165th with 19%).