Corruption perception in the Philippines is reaching the tipping point
As the current President Rodrigo Duterte is promising to get rid of the corruption within the country, the support for his hardline extermination methods reflect the deep societal problems that are caused by the corruption spread and failures of the previous presidents.
With 19 percent of the country’s population living in extreme poverty and ranking 95th in the global corruption perception index by the Transparency International, the Philippines also ranks poorly even in comparison to Southeast Asian neighbors, as it is the 5th most corrupt nation among 10 member-states in the region.
The current grim situation and failures of the previous Philippines’ authorities to resolve the corruption issues are paving ways for political opportunisms that do not resolve the country’s corruption problem in the long-term.
The local population does not believe any longer in the constructive methods for resolving the troubled issues of corruption, which perpetuates support for radical measures as those proposed by Duterte. Despite abhorrent cruelty, the country’s public opinion does not seem to mind witnessing hundreds of people getting killed as a part of an anti-corruption struggle.
In effect, Duterte’s infamous slogans of promising drug lords would be made to “swallow bullets” have helped him to acquire a support of 16 million Filipinos and current enjoy 91 percent of approval rating.
The corruption steals lots of opportunities from the country. According to a Global Financial Integrity survey, the country has lost more than $410.5 billion between 1960 and 2011 on illicit financial flow and people believe that fighting corruption will deliver prosperity.
The current brutal crackdown on corruption is also reflects the failed policy of the former president Benigno Aquino III of ‘Pag walang kurap, walang mahirap’ (if there is no corruption, there is no poverty). As people believe that brutality will cure corruption faster and, henceforth, bring growth to the country’s economy.