Jamaica has shown marginal improvement in its corruption ranking. The island placed 69 out of 180 countries on the Corruption Perception Index (CPI) for 2020. However, the country is also ranked the fifth most corrupt in the Caribbean. The country’s ranking was announced during a media briefing.

The CPI is measured from 0 to 100, with 0 being the most corrupt and 100 being the least. 

The CPI for 2020 has scored Jamaica at 44.

However, the score of 44 is still well below the halfway mark which begs the question why do citizens view institutions as corrupt?

Political Scientist and Civil Society Advocate, Trevor Munroe says there was integrity training carried out by the Integrity Commission of Cabinet Ministers, following the September 2020 general election.

However, during 2020 there were significant minuses that negated the positives throughout the year.

National Integrity Action says another reason for the meager improvement is  the chronic breaches, of the annual reporting requirements mandated by law, by scores of budget-funded public bodies and agencies.

Only 1 of 164 public bodies and agencies were current in their annual reports as noted on the cabinet secretary’s website.

The International Monetary Fund (IMF) called for a competency based appointment process for public bodies however, this was not observed.

Nepotism and cronyism is another factor that has led to the low score on the corruption chart.

Amendments to strengthen the anti corruption law, making Major Organized and Anti-Corruption Agency (MOCA) independent, and the Integrity Commission more independent, are just some of the suggestions , Professor Munroe tabled to improve Jamaica’s  score for 2021.