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The past several months have brought to light bewildering scandals that have left us wondering when the camel’s back will finally break.

Singapore has on many occasions been used in contrast with Kenya’s economy. Since its independence, it has gradually grown to a highly developed market economy that is highly dependent on exports. Between 1965 and 1995, the South East Asian country’s economy achieved an estimated annual growth rate of six per cent.

Soon after Independence, Kenya’s GDP was ranked to be higher than Singapore’s. Its GDP in 1963 was $926.6 million, slightly higher than Singapore’s $917.2 million, according to the World Bank. But as Singapore continually sought to improve its systems, our country has had its fair share of economic sabotage, the greatest of them being corruption as white-collar thieves wasted and stole its resources with abandon.

With a corruption perception index (CPI) rank of six out of 180 last year, according to Transparency International, Singapore’s finance docket has implemented a dedicated budget website ( that offers budgeting information and citizens give their views.

It is also easier and more enticing for investors to set up businesses in Singapore, according to the global competitiveness report (2014-2015) by the World Economic Forum. TI gave Kenya a CPI of 145 out of 180 countries.

Kenya has been known to be a nightmare for prospective foreign investors. That not only denies the country potential revenue streams but also robs our unemployed youth viable opportunities to get employed and learn new skills

That is not to say Singapore has no corruption. In 2011, the former Singapore Land Authority deputy director and his manager were sentenced to 22 and 15 years in jail, respectively, for money laundering. Several other high-ranking government officials and civil servants have been jailed over corruption.

Corruption is also considered a serious problem in South Korea. In 2016, TI gave the East Asian country a CPI rank of 52 out of 176. Seoul has, nevertheless, made notable efforts in fighting corruption. In 2015, the prime minister resigned after barely two months in office over allegations of corruption.

In April, the former first female president, Park Geun-hye, was sentenced to 24 years imprisonment for multiple criminal charges — including bribery and abuse of office. She was widely celebrated during her tenure, even coming in 11th on the Forbes list of the world’s most powerful women in 2013.

Besides, Geun-hye, the daughter of former president and dictator Park Chung-hee, who was assassinated while in office in 1979, was the most powerful woman in Asia in 2014, when she was ranked the 46th most powerful person.

Kenya, with its many outrageous graft cases, is yet to show any fundamental action in dealing with high-profile suspects. Those who steal billions of shillings in taxpayers’ funds are transferred or elected to even higher positions.

How do we expect to see the end of corruption in a country where we reward wrongdoing?

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