Switch headers Switch to TIGweb.org

Are you an TIG Member?
Click here to switch to TIGweb.org

HomeHomeExpress YourselfPanoramaDEFINITIONS OF CORRUPTION
a TakingITGlobal online publication

(Advanced Search)

Panorama Home
Issue Archive
Current Issue
Next Issue
Featured Writer
TIG Magazine
Short Story
My Content
by Ganizani Gwai, Zambia May 25, 2002
Education , Human Rights   Opinions


Definitions of corruption vary from country to country depending on both legal and moral standards or norms of that given society or
country. However, though with variations, most legal definitions of corruption in most countries are similar in many respects, including in their ambiguity.

For instance, the Zambia Anti-corruption Commission (ACC) defines corruption under its Act of 1996 (No:42) as:
"The soliciting, accepting, obtaining, giving, promising or offering of gratification by way of a bribe or other personal temptations of
inducement or the misuse or abuse of a public office for private advantage or benefit."

The Tanzanian Prevention of Corruption Act states that:
"Any person who, corruptly solicits, accepts or obtains...from any person for himself of another person, any advantage as an inducement to or reward for or otherwise on account of any agent or not such agent shall be guilty of an offence".

On the other hand, the Zimbabwe Prevention of Corruption Act defines a corrupt practice as: "if any agent corruptly solicits, accepts, obtains,
agrees to accept or attempts to obtain from any person a gift or consideration for himself(herself) or any other persons as endowment or
reward for doing or not doing, or for having done or not done any act, in relation to his(her) principal's affairs or business".

The Malawi Corrupt Practices Act defines corruption as:
"Soliciting, accepting or obtaining, or to the giving, promising or offering of a gratification, by way of a bribe or other personal temptation,
enticement or inducement".

There are as many definitions as there are many countries and institutions dealing with the problem of corruption. In some cases, definitions may be determined by the focus of a particular institution. For instance the United Nations Development Programme (UNDP) in its report on Fighting Corruption to Improve Governance, defined corruption as: "The misuse of public powers, office and authority for private gain through bribery, extortion, influence, peddling, nepotism fraud, speed, money or embezzlement".

The World Bank Economic Development Institute in its National Integrity System country studies defined corruption as, "an abuse of
entrusted power by politicians or civil servants for personal gain".

The Ordinary Dictionary meaning of corruption is that it is an act or state of being guilty of dishonest practices. It is a pervasion of morality
as well as integrity (particularly in public offices and institutions).

From the above definitions it is clear that the various definitions of corruption seem to offer a carte blanche or blanket definition in a desperate attempt to be all-embracing of this scourge called corruption. These definitions to a large extent give luminous picture of the various enemies any anti-corruption activist is likely to confront: those soliciting, receiving, accepting, giving, obtaining, offering, promising, abusing power or authority, being tempted or induced and their culprits, etc.

In summary, the various definitions of corruption give a general understanding of corruption as any conduct, action or behaviour that departs from legitimately established laws, procedures and practices.



You must be logged in to add tags.

Writer Profile
Ganizani Gwai

This user has not written anything in his panorama profile yet.

global evil= corruption
rujana lukac | Jul 22nd, 2002
I am verry happy and satisfied that somebody has touched the theme of corruption , one of evils , if I can express in my term, of the global world. Corruption is everywhere. Different kinds of corruption exists but there is just one definition and meaning of it that everybody are looing it. Someone with open someone with unfortunately closed eyes.

You must be a TakingITGlobal member to post a comment. Sign up for free or login.