Civil service corruption

Faster Together: A One-Stop Shop for Business Registration in Senegal, 2006–2015

Author
Maya Gainer, Stefanie Chan, and Laura Skoet
Country of Reform
Abstract

In 2007, Senegal opened a Business Creation Support Office that vastly reduced the time required to register a business from two months to 48 hours. Before the creation of the office, foreign investors as well as local entrepreneurs had to deal with six different government agencies, each of which had its own requirements and procedures. The onerous undertaking discouraged business investment, kept significant revenue sources off government tax rolls, and created fertile ground for corruption. In 2006, President Abdoulaye Wade decided to change the situation. Wade assigned the Agency for Investment Promotion and Major Works, or APIX, the task of making it possible to register a business in just two days. A small team from the agency examined the options and decided that a one-stop shop would best meet Senegal’s needs. The model required no legislative changes, and it allowed agencies to retain control over their procedures—while reducing red tape and letting APIX supervise the entire process. APIX leaders worked hard to win the cooperation of institutions and individual agents, and the Business Creation Support Office opened in downtown Dakar in November 2007. The institutions involved in registration sent representatives to work in the office, and APIX staff collected applications, supervised the office, and coordinated gradual improvements in procedures. After the office opened, entrepreneurs could complete the registration process at a single location and be done within 48 hours. By 2016, the office had further reduced the time required to a single day.

Maya Gainer, ISS Research Specialist, and Stefanie Chan and Laura Skoet of Sciences Po’s Paris School of International Affairs drafted this case study based on interviews conducted in Dakar, Senegal, and Abidjan, Côte d’Ivoire, in January 2016. This case study was funded by the French Development Agency. Case published ­­­­­­­­­­­­­­­May 2016.

Changing a Civil Service Culture: Reforming Indonesia's Ministry of Finance, 2006-2010

Author
Gordon LaForge
Country of Reform
Abstract

By the mid-2000s, Indonesia had recovered from a devastating economic crisis and made significant progress in transitioning from a dictatorship to a democracy. However, the country's vast state bureaucracy continued to resist pressure to improve operations. In 2006, President Susilo Bambang Yudhoyono tapped economist Sri Mulyani Indrawati to transform Indonesia's massive Ministry of Finance, which was responsible not only for economic policy making but also for taxes and customs. During four years as minister, Mulyani introduced new standard operating procedures, raised civil servant salaries, created a new performance management system, and cracked down on malfeasance. Her reforms turned what had once been a dysfunctional institution into a high performer. But ongoing resistance illustrated the difficulties and perils of ambitious bureaucratic reform in Indonesia.

This case study was drafted by Gordon LaForge based on research by Rachel Jackson, Drew McDonald, Matt Devlin, and Andrew Schalkwyk and on interviews conducted by ISS staff members from 2009 to 2015. Case published May 2016. Other ISS case studies provide additional detail about certain aspects of the reforms discussed in this case or about related initiatives. For example, see Instilling Order and Accountability: Standard Operating Procedures at Indonesia's Ministry of Finance, 2006-2007.

Battling a Cancer: Tackling Corruption in Peru, 2011–2014

Author
Blair Cameron
Country of Reform
Abstract

From 2000 to 2009, Peru’s justice system successfully prosecuted former president Alberto Fujimori and other high-level public officials for acts of corruption committed during the previous decade. But the country’s judicial institutions struggled to curb newer corruption networks that were operating with impunity throughout the country. Because the networks had penetrated the justice system itself, it was increasingly difficult to prosecute—let alone convict—people who had participated in briberies, kickbacks, or other schemes. In the 2011 presidential election, Ollanta Humala, whose slogan was “Honesty Makes a Difference,” captured 51% of the vote and gave a boost to reformers within the country’s legal institutions. Humala joined the Open Government Partnership, strengthened Peru’s anticorruption commission, and brought together top leaders from the country’s judicial and legal institutions to improve the government’s response to corruption. In 2012, the comptroller general, the public prosecutor (attorney general), and the president of the judiciary created a new subsystem to bring to trial those officials accused of corruption. They created a new prosecutorial team and designated a specialized chamber to hear the most-complex corruption cases. At the same time, the Ministry of Justice and Human Rights strengthened its capacity to investigate and bring to trial cases involving the misuse of public resources. By 2015, several cases were in preparation, nearing trial. The fight against corruption in Peru continued to face many obstacles, however, including the perception that anticorruption efforts had lost top-level support.

Blair Cameron drafted this case study based on interviews conducted in Lima in August 2015. Case published December 2015.

Sri Mulyani Indrawati

Ref Batch
EX
Focus Area(s)
Ref Batch Number
1
Critical Tasks
Country of Reform
Interviewers
Jennifer Widner and Gabriel Kuris
Name
Sri Mulyani Indrawati
Interviewee's Position
Managing Director, World Bank
Language
English
Town/City
Washington, DC
Country
Date of Interview
Reform Profile
No
Abstract

As a follow up to her 2009 interview, Sri Mulyani Indrawati revisits her years as Indonesia’s minister of finance to discuss the challenges of building her economic reform team and institutionalizing performance management at the ministry.  She describes how she worked closely with key members of the KPK (Corruption Eradication Commission) to cultivate motivation and teamwork among government employees.  With the support of her reform team, she established institutional mechanisms to reduce corruption and raise the credibility of the government.  And although Indonesia’s bureaucracy proved to challenge the reform team at times, she explains how performance indicators and standard operating procedures were instrumental to identify and overcome weaknesses in the Ministry of Finance.  In conclusion, Sri Mulyani reflects on the more personal attributes required to move sustainable reform forward: a strong vision along with the trust and commitment of her fellow reformers.   She describes the practice of public asset disclosure as one of the most sustainable reforms her team implemented at the ministry. 

Profile

At the time of this interview, Sri Mulyani Indrawati was managing director at the World Bank.  She has extensive experience in financial reforms to reduce corruption and strengthen economic growth.

Calling Citizens, Improving the State: Pakistan’s Citizen Feedback Monitoring Program, 2008 – 2014

Author
Mohammad Omar Masud
Core Challenge
Country of Reform
Abstract

In early 2008, Zubair Bhatti, administrative head of the Jhang district in Pakistan’s Punjab province, recognized the need to reduce petty corruption in the local civil service—a problem that plagued not only Punjab but also all of Pakistan. He began to contact citizens on their cell phones to learn about the quality of the service they had received. Those spot checks became the basis for a social audit system that spanned all 36 districts in Punjab by 2014. The provincial government outsourced much of the work to a call center, which surveyed citizens about their experiences with 16 different public services. The data from that call center helped district coordination officers identify poorly performing employees and branches, thereby enhancing the capability of the government to improve service delivery. By early 2014, the province was sending about 12,000 text messages daily to check on service quality. More than 400,000 citizens provided information between the beginning of the initiative and 2014. Known as the Citizen Feedback Monitoring Program, the Punjab’s social audit system became the template for similar innovations in other provinces and federal agencies in Pakistan.

Mohammad Omar Masud drafted this case based on interviews conducted in Punjab, Pakistan, in January and March 2014. Case published February 2015.

Note: This case study was previously titled "Calling the Public to Empower the State: Pakistan's Citizen Feedback Monitoring Program, 2008-2014."

Cleaning the Civil Service Payroll: Post-Conflict Liberia, 2008-2011

Author
Jonathan (Yoni) Friedman
Focus Area(s)
Country of Reform
Abstract
Shadi Baki and Alfred Drosaye confronted a civil service in disarray in 2008, following a devastating 14-year civil war during which 250,000 people were killed, Liberia’s infrastructure was all but destroyed and government services collapsed. Despite the disintegration of the government, the civil service payroll more than doubled to 44,000 from 20,000 before the war, saddling the government with an unaffordable wage bill. Furthermore, the government had little sense of who was actually on the payroll and who should have been on the payroll. Rebel groups and interim governments put their partisans on the payroll even though they were unqualified or performed no state function. An unknown number of civil servants died or fled during the war but remained on the payroll. After delays due to an ineffective transitional government and moderately successful but scattered attempts to clean the payroll, Baki and Drosaye at Liberia’s Civil Service Agency set out in 2008 to clean the payroll of ghost workers, establish a centralized, automated civil service personnel database, and issue biometric identification cards to all civil servants. Cleaning the payroll would bring order to the civil service, save the government money and facilitate pay and pension reforms and new training initiatives. This case chronicles Liberia’s successful effort to clean up its payroll following a protracted civil war and lay the foundation for organized civil service management.
 
Jonathan Friedman drafted this case study on the basis of interviews conducted in Monrovia, Liberia during December 2010 and on the basis of interviews conducted by Summer Lopez in Monrovia, Liberia during June 2008. Case published October 2011.
 
Associated Interview(s):  Shadi Baki, Alfred Drosaye

Manzoor Hasan

Ref Batch
G
Focus Area(s)
Ref Batch Number
3
Country of Reform
Interviewers
Andrew Schalkwyk
Name
Manzoor Hasan
Interviewee's Position
Director
Interviewee's Organization
Institute of Governance Services, BRAC University, Bangladesh
Language
English
Nationality of Interviewee
Bangladeshi
Town/City
Dhaka
Country
Date of Interview
Reform Profile
No
Abstract

Manzoor Hasan identifies three main challenges for the Bangladeshi civil service: lack of sufficient training, structural problems arising from a colonial legacy of extensive hierarchization and growing politicization leading to corruption and decreased accountability.  He discusses the curriculum and admission policies of the Master’s Program in Governance and Development at the Institute of Governance Services, which aims to address these concerns.  Its multi-step applicant selection strategy aims to increase representation across genders and sectors of civil service, and to identify candidates who are innovative and willing to forego financial and career advancement objectives during the length of training.  The program thus contributes to a growing pool of qualified Bangladeshi civil servants who will be ready to implement reform when the necessary political vision comes about.  To this end, networking capacity is one of the target skills.  Hasan points to a need to increase governmental commitment to training and reform by  relying on state funding rather than donor funding.  This would counteract a trend toward superficial reform measures by which commissions are set up to issue policy recommendations but few concrete steps are taken.

Profile

At the time of this interview, Manzoor Hasan was the director of the Institute of Governance Studies at BRAC University in Bangladesh.  A lawyer by training, Hasan was the founding executive director of Transparency International Bangladesh in 1996.  He was made an Officer of the Order of the British Empire (OBE) in 2003 for his service to Transparency International Bangladesh.  After seven years, he assumed the post of Transparency International Regional Director for Asia-Pacific in Berlin.  Upon returning to Bangladesh, he joined the Bangladesh Rural Advancement Committee (BRAC) and its university.

Full Audio File Size
50 MB
Full Audio Title
Manzoor Hasan Obe - Full Interview

Samuel Kofi Woods

Ref Batch
E
Focus Area(s)
Ref Batch Number
9
Country of Reform
Interviewers
Graeme Blair
Name
Samuel Kofi Woods
Interviewee's Position
Minister of Public Works
Interviewee's Organization
Liberian Cabinet
Language
English
Nationality of Interviewee
Liberian
Town/City
Monrovia
Country
Date of Interview
Reform Profile
No
Abstract
In this interview, Samuel Kofi Woods describes his experiences with institutional reform in Liberia, detailing his work for the country first as a youthful activist and later a government employee. Drawing upon his time as labor minister, Woods describes the measures he took to improve accountability and transparency within the ministry, emphasizing the need to lead by example and hold true to principles of equality and fairness. Speaking of the day-to-day running of the ministry, Woods delves into the measures taken to address its human resource capacity. Among other things, he outlines the ‘emergency employment program’ and ‘merit-based recruitment policies’ that were instituted. Woods also elaborates on the tasks he undertook upon his appointment as Minister of Public Works, providing insight into reform strategies and citing actions he took to deal with deep-rooted issues such as corruption and patronage. He suggests that for reform to be sustainable, it is the capacity of institutions that needs to be strengthened, and not just that of individuals. He recognizes, however, that for a reform effort to be successful, support from both high-level government officials and the general populace is crucial. Woods concludes by noting that there will always be challenges faced by those seeking reform, but to be successful, one must learn to adapt to the problems faced and not lose heart. 
Profile

At the time of this interview, Samuel Kofi Woods was the Liberian Minister of Public Works, having been appointed to the position in 2009. A youth activist since the age of 11, Woods went on to become a well-known champion of human rights, receiving the Reebok’s Human Rights Award in 1994 and the Benerementi Medal in 1999. Woods established the Justice and Peace Commission of the Catholic Church in Liberia in November 1991, and played a leading role in documenting and publicizing human rights abuses during the 1989-1997 civil war. His efforts in this regard included the creation of the Forefront Organization in 1994, an international advocacy and support network. Woods also set up the Foundation for International Liberty, an international non-governmental human rights organization with offices in Sierra Leone and Liberia. In 2006, Woods became the Minister of Labor under President Ellen Johnson Sirleaf. He held this position until his appointment to the Ministry of Public Works in 2009. 

Full Audio File Size
74 MB
Full Audio Title
Samuel Woods - Full Interview

A Change Agent in the Tax Office: Nigeria's Federal Inland Revenue Service, 2004-2009

Author
Richard Bennet
Focus Area(s)
Country of Reform
Abstract

In 2004 Ifueko Omoigui Okauru, a management consultant with no previous government experience, took on the challenge of fixing Nigeria’s corrupt and dysfunctional tax system. As executive chairman of the Federal Inland Revenue Service, she was responsible for reforming a weak and ineffective organization to meet the needs of a changing country. To reduce its heavy dependence on oil, Nigeria needed to diversify its revenue streams beyond the petroleum sector. Improved tax administration offered an avenue toward achieving that goal. In overhauling the tax system, Omoigui Okauru had to overcome entrenched opposition from private consultants who earned high pay under the existing system, defeat the institutional inertia that characterized the revenue service, and curb the corruption that fueled citizens’ distrust and hampered tax collection. To advance her vision for modernized tax administration, she recruited talented professionals and instituted specialized career tracks for employees, alongside additional training modules for existing staff and a reorganization of departments and functions. This case study chronicles the first five years of Omoigui Okauru’s efforts to improve tax collection in Nigeria and offers an example of how an outside leader working with a team of experienced professionals can build the coalitions necessary for legislative, policy and administrative reforms.

Richard Bennet drafted this case study based on interviews conducted in Abuja, Nigeria in September 2011, and interviews conducted and text prepared by Itumeleng Makgetla in September 2009. Case published January 2012.

Bola Tinubu

Ref Batch
D
Focus Area(s)
Ref Batch Number
13
Country of Reform
Interviewers
Graeme Blair
Name
Bola Tinubu
Interviewee's Position
Former Governor
Interviewee's Organization
State of Lagos, Nigeria
Language
English
Nationality of Interviewee
Nigerian
Town/City
Lagos
Country
Date of Interview
Reform Profile
Yes
Abstract
Bola Tinubu, former governor of the state of Lagos in Nigeria, reflects on his administration’s successes in reforming the civil service, reducing corruption, and improving state infrastructure.  He details the process he went through to reform the state government, from the waste management system to financial mismanagement within the public sector.  Tinubu lays out the steps he took to improve incentives for civil servants, including salary increases, improving quality and hygiene of working environments, and teaching investment principles and how to work toward home ownership.  His payroll-system reforms removed thousands of ghost workers from the system.  Tinubu explains how he applied principles he learned in the corporate world to the public sector reform effort.  Tinubu also details the steps he took in removing endemic corruption in the public sector, which included eliminating cash payments to the government.  He discusses how he brought back expatriates to improve the hospitals and transportation system.  He also touches on the difficulties in working with a federal government that sometimes undermined reform efforts.
 
Profile
Bola Tinubu served as governor of the state of Lagos from 1999 to 2007, during which he initiated reforms that improved the efficiency of the civil service and improved infrastructure.  He served from 1992 to 1993 as a senator until the end of the Nigerian Third Republic.  Prior to entering politics he worked in the private sector for companies including Arthur Andersen and Deloitte, Haskins, & Sells.  He was also an executive of Mobil Oil Nigeria.  After Tinubu left politics, he became active in negotiations to unite Nigeria’s opposition parties and in pushing for electoral reforms.   He earned a bachelor’s degree from Chicago State University in business administration in 1979.  He holds the tribal aristocratic title of asiwaju, given to him by the Oba of Lagos, who holds a ceremonial position as traditional leader of the state of Lagos.
Full Audio File Size
71 MB
Full Audio Title
Bola Tinubu - Full Interview