2019 Corruption Perceptions Index: How are African countries doing?

The corruption perceptions index of 2019 published by Transparency International indicate that majority of African countries are still performing poorly as far as overcoming corruption is concerned. Most of the African countries fell below the global average score of 43 points out of the total of 100 with some countries like Somalia that came at the bottom of the list that has got up to 180 countries scoring as low as 9 points.

The results from the report indicate that African countries still face a huge fight in their quest to overcome corruption and a lot of effort and implementation of corruption-control measures are needed if they are to see some breakthrough in this big battle.

The rankings by region indicate that Sub-Saharan Africa is the lowest-scoring region in the world with the average score of 32 while North Africa that was grouped together with the Middle East scored 39 points all falling below the global average score.

Although the perceptions index indicates that Africa as a continent at large is still languishing in terrible corruption, some individual countries are trying their best to overcome the vice and the figures are showing their progress.

Seychelles was ranked as the least corrupt country on the continent scoring 66 points and in 27th position globally coming next to big democracies like the U.S and France who scored 69 points each in the 23rd position.

Other well-performing countries on the continent include Botswana that came second to Seychelles in Africa and 34th in the world with 61 points. Cape Verde is third on the continent and 41st in the world with 58 points, Rwanda was ranked as the best in East and Central Africa with 53 points and in 51st position worldwide.

Other African countries that scored above the global average score of 43 points include Mauritius with 52 points, Namibia – 52 points, Sao Tome and Principe – 46 points, Senegal – 45 points, South Africa – 44 points and Tunisia with 43 points.

On the other hand, some of the worst-performing countries on the African continent as far as corruption is concerned include Somalia that was ranked last globally on the 2019 corruption perceptions index with only 9 points. Others include Sudan – 16 points, Equatorial Guinea – 16 points, Libya – 18 points and all the four are among the last 10 countries on the list.

Countries like Guinea Bissau, Democratic Republic of Congo (DRC), Congo, Burundi, Chad, Eritrea, Zimbabwe, Madagascar are also severely hit by corruption as they all sit among the last 25 countries on the list with less than 25 points each.

Globally, Denmark and New Zealand were ranked as the least corrupt countries in the world with both scoring 87 points followed by Finland, Singapore, Sweden, and Switzerland in the third and fourth positions respectively with the latter 3 all coming fourth with 85 points. Norway, Netherlands, Germany and Luxembourg complete the top ten in that order.

World-leading economies like the U.S and China are not performing so well in the corruption index as one would expect with the U.S coming 23rd together with France with 69 points while China fell far behind in the rankings, coming in the 80th position with just 41 points and below the global average rate of 43 points.


According to Transparency International, “A staggering number of countries are showing little to no improvement in tackling corruption.” The body suggests that reducing big money in politics and promoting inclusive political decision-making are essential to end curb corruption.

Other solutions recommended by Transparency International in order to end corruption and restore trust in politics include; managing conflicts of interests, controlling political financing, strengthening electoral integrity, and regulating lobbying activities. Others include tacking preferential treatment, empowering citizens, and reinforcing checks and balances.

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