TI urges IMF/World Bank to assess risks...

Transparency International, a Berlin-based corruption watchdog, has called on the IMF and World Bank to fully assess the risks before giving money to countries.

Chairperson Huguette Labelle emphasised in an interview with Channel NewsAsia that the money disbursed must go to the programmes which are aimed at improving the lives of people and not into the pockets of individuals.

She hoped that the IMF/World Bank annual meetings will support the World Bank President in his plans to curb corruption.

She said: "Every year we publish a number of major surveys that we do, one of them is the Corruption Perception Index which ranks countries according to the perception that the people of those countries and those outside doing business have of a country's degree of corruption.

"It is this kind of approach that we use to continue to create greater awareness of the country and also to push the country to greater commitment.

"Many countries have the laws, they have the right institutions, the problem is implementation and enforcement, and until that is done and unless you have the kinds of justice system and financial systems that work, we will always have a much greater chance of having money lost to corruption."

"Singapore ranks at a pretty good level compared to many other countries," added Huguette Labelle.

"Singapore has the kind of systems that work. The financial system is very strict in terms of the generation of income, the budgetary allocation of funds, it's done in a very tight system. You have a justice system that works. If something is wrong, investigations take place and prosecution takes place, and if there is a wrong that is found, the people are punished accordingly."
channelnewsasia, 14 September 2006