The Pros And Cons Of Corruption

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5) Corruption offers this regime the ultimate method of control. By liberalising corruption, the system is designed so everyone is guilty. Thus it is government by guilt, and the corollary fear of arrest (at the president’s whim) creates a certain vulnerability which keeps these white-collar thieves in check. There was a time when disenchanted high level public officials could slam the door on government and go on to become its worst critics or even join the opposition. Today they know at the slightest show of indignation they will be investigated for one or other act of impropriety they would invariably have committed while in office. The same system has been employed to suborn people outside of government, including leaders of the opposition. Through shady deals and dubious government contracts which they hardly ever execute, the government has been able to put a noose around the necks of erstwhile adversaries. There are no checks and balances and rampant corruption is accepted as a way of life. Former US Ambassador Neils Marquardt told reporters that in Cameroon “No institution seems to be immune from this scourge, and corruption is being practised and condoned by ordinary people including small children, their parents, their grandparents, ordinary civil servants virtually everyone.” Article 66 of the 1996 constitution requires public office holders (from the President down) to declare their assets before and after holding office. It states: The President of the

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