From The Chair

Suzanne Snively

Suzanne Snively
TINZ Chair

I have just returned from this year’s Transparency International (TI) Annual Members Meeting (AMM) held in Putrajaya, Malaysia from the end of August.

The AMM was held during the week of Merdeka, a celebration of Malaysia’s independence from colonial rule in 1957. Amidst the Malaysian flag-draped buildings and the smoky atmosphere from burning across the way in Indonesia, allegations wafted of the Prime Minister’s unanswered questions, centring on the disappearance of USD 700 million.

Ranked at 50th, tied with Georgia and Samoa on the Corruptions Perception Index (CPI), Malaysia is one of the few countries in the world that explicitly uses the CPI to set the key performance indicators for its anti-corruption agency (MACC). It has set out steps to raise its score from 52 to 70 so it can improve its ranking to 25th.This is consistent with words used in the statement of the founding father of the nation, Abdul Rahman, “integrity” and “honesty”.

As has become the tradition over the past nearly two decades, TI’s AMM was followed by the International Anti-Corruption Conference (IACC).

In his IACC opening address TI Chair José Ugaz had graphic examples of impunity. Not only through the actions of the Malaysian Prime Minister, but also of the customs interference by the Guatemalan President and the fleeing of the President of the Ukraine to avoid prosecution for stealing at least $350 million, leaving behind a mansion with a zoo and a full-sized Spanish galleon.

As José noted “… too many corrupt politicians and business people use shell companies to conceal their money.  This is why ….[there is a] need for public registers of beneficial ownership.”

Sir Anand Satyanand attended his first TI Advisory Council meeting.

I was  joined at the AMM and IACC by TINZ Director Josephine Serrallach and Executive Officer, Lynn McKenzie.  We led a successful campaign to include a strong prevention approach in TI’s 2020 strategy.  Research shows prevention is the best antidote to corruption.

Meantime, submissions to the New Zealand National Action Plan for the Open Government Partnership closed at the end of August with very few submissions.

While citizens demonstrate in Brazil, Guatemala, Ukraine and Malaysia about what they don’t like about their governments, an opportunity has been lost for people here to specify what they would like from ours.

Suzanne Snively, Chair
Transparency International New Zealand Inc.

Actions

Recent Activity

Corruption Perceptions Index 2016 TINZ media release
Transparency International’s 2016 Corruption Perception Index (TI CPI) has found that the New Zealand and Denmark public sectors are the least corrupt in the world. 25 Jan, 2017

TINZ OGP Submission
Transparency International New Zealand (TINZ) submitted recommendations for New Zealand’s second Open Government Partnership (OGP) National Action Plan (NAP). Among the recommendations were a call for more ambition in creating NAPs and developing channels of communication for improving engagement with citizens. 19 Aug, 2016

Safeguarding the public interest in research
1 Aug, 2016

EU and New Zealand tax transparency
1 Aug, 2016

London Summit 2016 NZ Statement Commitments Progress
31 Jul, 2016

New Zealand Country Statement Anti Corruption Summit London 2016
29 May, 2016

Shewan Inquiry Submission Media Release
TINZ has provided its submission to the Shewan Inquiry calling on the government to widen the terms of reference to protect New Zealand's reputation and future proof our laws following the release of the "Panama papers". 21 May, 2016

CPI 2015 TINZ Media Release
Corruption Free? NZ drops again. New Zealand has fallen to fourth place in the Transparency International Corruption Perceptions Index (CPI). 26 Jan, 2016