Thursday, December 9, 2010

(Anti) Corruption Day Today

It may be not be very amusing, but while the world celebrates the Anti Corruption Day today, our government chooses not to for the last consecutive three years. Why? I do not need to elaborate. In Pakistan, during the Mush regime, the day was observed in collaboration with the Transparency International (TI) and the United Nations Office on Drugs and Crimes (UNODC) – something usually not expected from the dictators. But its non observance under a democratic rule is certainly objectionable and un-understandable.

The decision comes amid reports of large scale embezzlement and corruption in the provision of facilities to the Pakistani Hajj pilgrims during their stay Saudi Arabia and massive kickbacks and commissions feared to the tune of some Rs. 20 billion in award of contracts of some housing schemes. The excavations at Reko Diq in Balochistan, a haven of huge deposits of gold and other precious materials, is also making headlines these days as the contracts have been awarded with no regard to merit through open tenders.

The growing awareness to corrupt and the corruption is the hallmark of observing the 9th of December as the anti corruption day globally. While people only talked of corruption in hidden words some years ago, they are now more vocal and pointing fingers towards the corrupt. As a result, more and more politicians, head of the states and CEOs of major giants are being hauled and prosecuted on charges of corruption.

And rightly so, the observance of the day has its significance as the tax payers’ have every right to know where their hard earned tax money goes and today they vow not to let their taxes be embezzled or squandered which they give to their governments for the better being.

Pakistan is not faring very good on this account and non-observance of this day is of serious concern for every Pakistani. Rather such an act makes others more doubtful about our government’s acts and that’s why it suffers from the credibility issue. Had this not be the case, the world would have come forwards whole heartedly to help the flood victims, who continue to suffer and are braving the severe winters under the open sky for want of funds to construct shelter for them.

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