Ethiopia: Prominent Scholars Stress Need for Identifying Types of Corruption in Ethiopia

Addis Ababa — Prominent Ethiopian scholars have emphasized on the need for identifying the types of corruption in Ethiopia to tackle them effectively and quickly.

This was disclosed at a Workshop on Colloquium on Post conflict Transition in Ethiopia that began here yesterday.

To the co-authors of "Corporate Ownership Structure, State Capture and Institutional Reform Issues in Ethiopia", state capture is the main feature of corruption in Ethiopia.

Professors Seid Hassan of Murray State University (USA) and Minga Negash of Witwatersrand (South Africa) state capture is actions of individuals, groups or firms in both the public and private sectors to influence the formulation of laws, regulations, decrees and other governmental policies.

This type of corruption is unique for Ethiopia since the politicians control the legislation and the business (money).

Professor Seid asserted that there are many companies in Ethiopia owned by a political party and that would make corruption a systematic problem in the country.

In order to curb corruption successfully, the first and foremost thing is to make crystal clear and figure out the type of corruption that prevails in Ethiopia, he emphasized.

Professor Minga Negash revealed that state capture is the most dangerous type of corruption that ranges from petty corruption to state capture has a pernicious effect on the development of the country.

The scholar further said that the co-authors have attempted to figure out if "accountability" is mentioned in the Constitution in light of corruption.

However, they reportedly found only two to three words that are in fact used to explain the relationship between bodies but not related to corruption, he added.

Professor Minga urged the government to examine the Constitution in order to address the problem of corruption.

The other presenter of the paper entitled "Corruption: A Force that Challenges Peace and Development in Ethiopia", Professor Getachew Metaferia from Tel Aviv University pointed out that money gained by corruption is now challenging the government, peace and democracy in the country.

The vast amount of money ill gotten through corruption and accumulated in foreign banks has detrimental effect in the foreign exchange reserve of Ethiopia, the scholar noted.

Professor Getachew recommended the strengthening of institutions such as the Ombudsman and Anti-corruption Commission.

At the end of the workshop, twenty one scholars are expected to present papers on post-conflict transition in Ethiopia, it was learned.

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