Drop of Corruption Index Score Sends Negative Signals
The 2022 Corruption Perception Index (CPI) placed Indonesia in the 110th rank of 180 countries surveyed. Indonesia's score worsened four points from 38 to 34 points.
JAKARTA, KOMPAS — The Indonesian Corruption Perception Index (CPI) in 2022 decreased by four points to score 34. This significant decline is considered to be one of the evidence that the strategy and corruption eradication program that is applied is ineffective. It is feared that it can send high risk signals to investors and the business world.
The 2022 CPI launched by Transparency International on Tuesday (31/1/2023) showed that Indonesia’s score of 34 was ranked 110th in 180 countries surveyed. The CPI is a composite indicator to measure the perception of public sector corruption on a scale of zero (very corrupt) up to 100 (very clean).
In 2021, Indonesia received a score of 38, so the achievement in 2022 was referred to as the most drastic decline since 1995. This achievement in 2022 was the same as the 2014 Indonesian CPI score, namely 34 points.
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"Indonesia has only raised the score of the CPI by two points from 32 over the past decade since 2012. This situation shows the response to corruption practices still tends to run slowly, even deteriorating, due to the lack of real support from stakeholders, said Deputy Secretary-General of Transparency International Indonesia (TII) Wawan Suyatmiko at the launch of the 2022 CPI in Jakarta.
The launch of the 2022 CPI was attended by a number of responders, namely the Deputy for Prevention and Monitoring of the Corruption Eradication Commission (KPK) Pahala Nainggolan; expert staff of the Presidential Office Yusuf Hakim Gumilang; lecturer of the Jentera Indonesia School of Law, Bivitri Susanti; economist and lecturer of the University of Indonesia, Faisal Basri; and Director of Paramadina Public Policy Institute Ahmad Khoirul Umam.
According to the secretary-general of TII, J Danang Widoyoko, a drastic decline in Indonesia's 2022 CPI score proves the strategy and program to eradicate it is ineffective. The revision of the KPK Law in 2019 was a change in the government's strategy to reduce law enforcement and shift to the prevention of corruption. Various corruption eradication programs in public and business services are carried out by digitizing public services. The Job Creation Law is claimed to be a big strategy to eradicate corruption through prevention. However, the decline in the CPI score shows that the strategy did not work.
The sharpest decline in the CPI appears on the International Country Risk Guide's Political Risk Service (PRS) indicator, from 48 points in 2021 to 35 in 2022. The PRS is related to corruption in the political system, conflict of interest between politicians and business actors, as well as extra payments/bribery for export-import permits.
In addition, a decline in five points also occurred on the IMD World Competitiveness Yearbook indicator from 44 to 39 points. This indicator analyzes the country based on how they manage competencies to achieve the creation of values in the long run. Some aspects reviewed are economic performance, government effectiveness, business effectiveness and infrastructure.
The PRS is related to corruption in the political system, conflict of interest between politicians and business actors, as well as extra payments/bribery for export-import permits.
In the Political and Economic Risk Consultancy (PERC) Asia Risk Guide, Indonesia's score fell from 32 to 29. This index sees variables, such as corruption, risk of intellectual property protection, labor quality and systemic strength and power of countries in Asia.
There are three indicators that are stagnant and there are two rising slightly, namely the World Justice-Project-Rule of Law Index (from 23 to 24) and Varieties of Democracy Project (from 22 to 24 points).
Difficulty in finding investors
Pahala Nainggolan highlighted the PERC Asia Risk Guide whose value is only 29. According to Pahala, with a very low value it will be difficult to find investors.
"So, if we expect investors, I agree. However, who will come if the country's risk is that high. We know who is coming and it will be even more difficult for us to uphold the eradication of corruption if from the beginning he already knows the overlapping land, but he still comes to invest," he said.
He further said there must be a breakthrough to overcome the deterioration of the CPI. In procurement, many politicians become business people, thereby resulting in conflicts of interest. "Now what we need is who can make a breakthrough to arrange all the institutions and the government," said Pahala.
He encouraged the service of civil servants to be improved, as well as political parties because they contribute to producing cadres in government agencies.
According to Yusuf Hakim Gumilang, the government made improvements for the first time during the administration of President Joko “Jokowi” Widodo when there was a decline in the 2020 CPI from 40 to 37 points. In 2021, the President held a limited meeting to increase the anti-corruption index and public services.
The government also accelerated the National Strategy (Stranas) of Corruption Prevention, reform at the ports and strengthened digitalization. "Digitalization does not prevent all of it, but closes the loopholes of corruption until the minimum stage," said Yusuf.
In addition, there is also strengthening in internal government supervision. Law enforcement officials, said Yusuf, carried out their duties in the action and law enforcement.
Meanwhile, according to Faisal Basri, from the CPI there was a high political risk so investors did not want to be in Indonesia long. Ironically, investors choose projects with fast profit without building infrastructure.
Meanwhile, Ahmad Khoirul Umam saw a serious record from the business world against law enforcement and the quality of democracy in Indonesia. The low value of the CPI is a message that there is currently a setback of democracy, which is exacerbated by extra payment and bribery related to export-import permits, conflicts of interest between politicians and business factors, as well as the existence of corruption in the political system.
A serious effort is needed to cut an extraordinary conflict of interest and the opening of the civilian space in policy formation.
According to Umam, there are certain political forces that co-optate the power system to experience sustainability and not to experience significant correction in the process of undergoing democracy. This indication can be seen from the KPK, the power corrector, which has been delegitimized, the orchestration of the discourse of the extension of the term of office of the President, the postponement of the 2024 elections, the extension of the term of office of the village heads and the discourse of the implementation of a closed proportional election system.
Bivitri Susanti asserted that Indonesia's CPI is returning to the initial figure of when President Jokowi took office, because of the large number of state capture corruption through the role of the state.
Based on Transparency International records, a decline in the CPI score generally occurs in countries with a low democracy because there is an effort to prevent or suppress differences of opinion. But at one point this will be open.
"A serious effort is needed to cut an extraordinary conflict of interest and the opening of the civilian space in policy formation," Bivitri said.
This article was translated by Hyginus Hardoyo.