Proética demands seriousness on corruption

11 January 2016

Wálter Albán, the former ombudsman and interior minister and now head of the NGO Proética, has appealed to the candidates in the presidential elections to get serious about their supposed commitment to dealing with corruption.

He noted that most of those who addressed the meeting of businessmen (CADE) last month highlighted the problem of corruption in their speeches, but that their discourse did not square with what they actually proposed to do if they attain their goal of clinching the presidency. “Judging by what the candidates said […] beyond a few generalities that tell us nothing, there is no real commitment nor any type of proposals”, he is quoted as saying. Proética intends to arrange meetings with the candidates to discuss what they propose to do in practice.

Corruption in public life and among elected officials is widespread in Peru. As a recent parliamentary report made clear, candidates are routinely financed by criminals who wish to influence political decisions in their favour. The scale of drug trafficking in the country and the dictates of money-laundering influence decision making on a daily basis. Albán made clear that a number of steps, such as access to tax and banking secrecy would help uncover such activities. A thorough overhaul of the office of the Contraloría would also help. Albán has pointed to the proliferation of credit cooperatives, especially in coca and cocaine producing areas, as a clear indication of drug-related money laundering activities.

The report, commissioned by Congresswoman Rosa Mavila and published at the end of last year shows in detail how drug trafficking distorts public life. So far, it has not been given the prominence it deserves.

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