Displaying items by tag: Corruption

Thursday, 24 November 2022 20:51

Iraq / Lebanon: headed down a chaotic path

Governments in both Iraq and Lebanon struggle to function and pass legislation. Political parties tied to ethnic and religious groups vie for control. Iran-backed militias hold more power than the military. There are many parallels between Lebanon, Syria, and Iraq because the nation-state borders were drawn around them by colonial nations around a hundred years ago. Ethnic groups thrown together by these borders often find it difficult to make their own voices heard and cooperate. It is an ongoing process that is only successful if there has been a dictator or authoritarian government. There is government corruption. Young Iraqis are dissatisfied and  are opening their eyes to opportunities for truth. South Iraq is seeing a time of harvest among the Shia community.  Even though they face persecution by larger religious groups, they are boldly proclaiming the Gospel repeatedly to all peoples and all backgrounds or ethnic minorities or majorities in their communities. God is doing amazing things in the south.

Published in Worldwide
Friday, 28 October 2022 12:23

Europe: Most corrupt countries

According to Transparency International, Russia remains the most corrupt European country. High-ranking public officials commit illegal activities. Albanian businesses are bedevilled by corruption and low conviction rates. Austria has well-developed institutions and proactive legal systems. However, high-level public officials and the central government have experienced corruption recently. Belgium also has a well-developed institutional and legal framework to combat corruption, but is also one of the most corrupt European countries. Bosnia’s political structures are the most affected by corruption. Bulgaria’s government officials engage in embezzlement, unfettered violation by the government relating to procurement of public assets as well as misappropriation of public funds. Bulgaria is the most corrupt member of the EU. Croatia is in the top three corrupt EU members but recently is making efforts to combat corruption. The Czech Republic has widespread corruption across most public sectors. France’s high-ranking officials and defence officers commit many corrupt activities.

Published in Europe
Friday, 22 July 2022 05:47

Asia: Poverty

One of the root causes of poverty in Asia is corruption that diverts resources from the poor to the rich in a culture of bribes. Corruption and bribery are two sides of the same coin. Another root cause of Asian poverty is recurring natural disasters - floods, typhoons, volcanic eruptions, landslides, etc. ‘Asian countries are mostly dependent upon agriculture, forestry and tourism. All can all be affected by natural disasters. Education is affected by poverty because poor people stop going to school to work; leaving them without literacy and numeracy skills needed for a career. Poor people tend to believe not only that they are poor, but that they will remain poor, leading to psychological poverty - an unhealthy frame of mind that is usually self-inflicted. Spiritual poverty occurs when people’s incompleteness and dependency overwhelms them. In their brokenness they feel that something is wrong within themselves. They need God. Ask God to brood over and touch the impoverished Asian.

Published in Worldwide
Thursday, 31 March 2022 22:11

Economic crime bill

Ground-breaking legislation introduced to Parliament recently could provide a major boost to Britain’s defences against illicit wealth. Transparency International (TI) said that the bill introduces much-needed reforms on property ownership, transparency, strengthening UK asset recovery powers, and sanctions. But there are some gaps within it. An 18-month transition period is far too long, and risks massive levels of asset flight. TI recommends the Government implement transitional provisions to stop property from being sold before the register comes into force and the proceeds transferred overseas. Overseas companies owning UK property should declare their beneficial ownership information; and the legislation should be implemented at the earliest opportunity to empower Companies House to introduce verification checks, query, investigate and remove false information.

Published in British Isles
Thursday, 03 March 2022 22:30

Sanctioned elsewhere but not by the UK

There are several individuals being sanctioned by other nations but not by the UK. Oleg Deripaska was sanctioned by America for money laundering, ordering the murder of a business rival, illegally wiretapping government officials, extortion, racketeering and bribing government officials. He owns 45% of an aluminium company listed on the London Stock Exchange, and former Conservative energy minister Lord Barker is its executive chairman. The Russian state-owned VTB bank was suspended from the Stock Exchange but Andrey Kostin, president of the bank, is not sanctioned. Victor Zolotov, also on the EU's list but not UK's, leads Russia's national guard. His family is one of the richest in Russia in the real estate sector, with property portfolios in the UK. Pro-Kremlin billionaire Alisher Usmanov founded Russian-based USM which owns major iron, steel and copper suppliers and a telecommunications company, and has commercial ties to Everton Football Club (which has suspended its sponsorship contracts with USM).

Published in British Isles
Thursday, 13 January 2022 19:38

Kazakhstan: corruption

Kazakhstan’s ongoing civil unrest shows the need for meaningful progress against corruption. Last week there were countrywide protests over inequality, poverty and corruption, also calling for meaningful reforms. The wealth the country’s political elite have amassed through corruption has been a particular concern throughout the protests. Kazakhstan has made some progress in fighting corruption in recent years - in a 2019 study people and small businesses saw things improving on the ground - but serious concerns remain, such as the flawed anti-corruption framework, lack of responsiveness in policy-making, and state control of the media. Pray for the UN High Commissioner for Human Rights and other independent voices who are urging the government to resolve the ongoing unrest peacefully. Unless the violence stops immediately, the way out of the crisis is uncertain for the already struggling Kazakh society.

Published in Worldwide
Thursday, 06 January 2022 21:02

South Africa: after Tutu

Archbishop Desmond Tutu’s funeral was on 1 January. He was a driving force behind ending racial segregation and discrimination in an era when South Africa taught the world what courage and reconciliation could achieve. The contrast between those times of sacrifice, justice and glory, and today's corrupt political realities are stark. Deep economic frustration, high unemployment and inequality is governed by the African National Congress (ANC), which is at open war with itself and full of corruption. The day after Tutu’s funeral a fire severely ravaged much of the houses of parliament, causing ‘significant damage’ to the new assembly wing, including the National Assembly chamber where lawmakers sit. While firefighters were still working on ‘hotspots’ further flames erupted, threatening to cause the entire structure to collapse. We can pray that as men rebuild the houses of parliament, God will raise up and anoint political and community leaders to repair the damage done by mismanagement and corruption.

Published in Worldwide
Thursday, 11 November 2021 21:51

Politics and corruption

After speaking on climate change Boris Johnson told the media he ‘genuinely believes the UK is not a corrupt country’. But sleaze accusations continue. MPs' second jobs are under scrutiny after Owen Paterson was found to have broken lobbying rules. Questions are raised about the Conservative MP and former attorney general Sir Geoffrey Cox who earned around £900,000 last year through his work as a lawyer, while International trade secretary Anne-Marie Trevelyan said it would be ‘wise’ to review the rules around second jobs. Although MPs are allowed second jobs, they are not allowed to use taxpayer-funded resources, or premises, to do so; this rule is being broken consistently. Meanwhile MP Andrew Bowie has decided to take a step back from his role of Tory vice-chair and focus on his constituency where he holds a narrow majority of 843 votes. A friend was quoted saying, ‘He doesn’t want to make a fuss but he’s unable to support the Government after the sleaze events of recent days.’

Published in British Isles
Thursday, 04 November 2021 21:35

Nicaragua: sham election

President Daniel Ortega has gripped Nicaragua’s election on 7 November by arresting all competition, controlling electoral authorities, and reinventing himself as a business-friendly devout Catholic. The US is working with international partners to prepare new sanctions to be levied if he wins the election that Washington denounces as a sham. It has also begun a review of Nicaragua’s participation in a Central American free trade agreement and has halted support for any ‘trade capacity building’ activities seen as benefiting Ortega’s government. Nearly half of Nicaraguans live below the poverty line, and an additional 90,000 individuals fell into poverty as a result of the pandemic. Nicaragua is one of the most corrupt countries globally - a costly, painful legacy of misrule by Ortega’s dictatorship. He stole, wasted and misused state resources, which were destined to combat poverty and used for national development, resulting in immense economic costs. See

Published in Worldwide
Friday, 08 October 2021 10:14

Tory donations disclosures

Mohamed Amersi, who partially funded Boris Johnson’s campaign to become prime minister, also advised the telecoms firm Telia, which in 2010 made a controversial $220m payment to a secretive offshore company. Oil executive Victor Fedotov, who gave £900,000 to 34 Tory MPs, made $4bn from allegedly corrupt Russian pipeline deals, and is currently seeking government approval for a controversial energy link between the UK and France. Lubov Chernukhin has given over £1.8m to the Conservatives since 2012. The secret offshore wealth she shares with her husband, a former Russian minister, includes a London house worth £38m and a £10m Oxfordshire mansion. Mrs Chernukhin's lawyers say she is a British citizen and is entitled to do as she wishes with her money. High-profile foreign politicians and UK political donors have over 1,500 UK properties, bought secretly using offshore firms worth £4bn. See also

Published in British Isles
Page 1 of 11