July 21, 2024


World's finest Law

The Concept and Causes of Corruption

Corruption is a crime. The word means the annihilation of a society or a nation. It’s a “wrongdoing on the part of an authority or powerful party through means that are illegitimate, immoral, or incompatible with ethical standards”. It is the abuse of public office and resources for personal gains (Political) or on the other hand, ‘it’s the spiritual or immoral deviation from the ideal’ (Philosophical). Examples of corrupt behaviors include: bribery, extortion, cronyism, fraud, and embezzlement among others. Many factors are attributed to corruption in a given society such as low and uneven economic growth, low political competition, weak civil society etc.

Mismanagement– is one of the causes of corruption in any society, especially in the underdeveloped countries. Public officials who are responsible for the governing of public funds are not competent and reliable in their management of these funds. Public officials; therefore, used the public treasuries as if it were their private funds to enrich themselves and award misleading contracts to the highest bidders.

Inequality of wealth- inequality increases corruption in a society. In a society where there is a huge gap between the rich and the poor, especially in the Third World countries; the rich always have greater advantage over the wealth of the land, which he can used to buy power and influence both legitimately and illegitimately. The rich-the ruling class or individuals-can also have the advantage to give bribery, use power or “connection”, which they have in their midst to influence law-implementing processes (bureaucratic corruption) and to buy constructive interpretation of the law (judicial corruption). As inequality increases, according to Meltzer and Richard, most of the population will be relatively poorer and likely will demand more extensive redistribution through higher levels of progressive taxation.

Selfishness and Greed-these are two most causal factors of corruption. Almost all motives of corruption cases have some selfish interest and greed attach to them. Selfishness and greed keep tempting the mind of an individual person to engage in corrupt related activities. Public officials, who are in charge of controlling the economic resources of a country, can be easily seduced by greed and selfishness to loot public monies for themselves and their families. The leading character before doing an act of corruption is being selfish and being greedy, while at the same time forgetting others.

Corruption is an endemic disease. Its forms prevails all over the world with bribery alone crossing one trillion US dollars annually. Mismanagement of public funds, inequality of wealth, and selfishness and greed are some of the major causes of corruption in our societies. These causes are mostly associated with underdeveloped countries, where government is weak and brutal, and where power is abused to serve the interest of the ruling class with less or no concern about the lives of the poor masses.