As the Corona-crisis changed the handling of corruption in Latin America

can be A ventilator to save lives - but how much should it cost? That depends on who buys it from whom, and how urgent it is. If it must be done quickly, such a

As the Corona-crisis changed the handling of corruption in Latin America

can be A ventilator to save lives - but how much should it cost? That depends on who buys it from whom, and how urgent it is. If it must be done quickly, such as during the Corona pandemic will bypass normal mechanisms such as public tenders and market studies normally and orders are issued directly or through well-connected middlemen a field day for corruption. Latin America cuts off in normal times, in the case of the international transparency rankings are not good and the corona crisis have taken advantage of politicians and their Clans shamelessly.

But unlike earlier they are caught surprisingly often. In Bolivia, stumbled health Minister Marcelo Navajas for the purchase of 170 devices from Spain at the price of 27.683 dollars per piece. The market price is only a quarter of them, such as the inter-American development Bank (BID), which funded the purchase, was for a book test. In addition, it came out that the ordered devices are designed for outpatient clinics and not for intensive care units. In Panama, the Vice-President and a presidential Advisor resigned due to the purchase of overpriced ventilators of 50,000 US dollars per piece.

In Colombia is being investigated by the Minister of agriculture and against 14 of 32 governors on charges of corruption in connection with the pandemic. In Rio de Janeiro, the Federal police and even the offices and the residence of the Governor in search of 150 million US dollars, which were earmarked for the construction of Notkrankenhäusern was looking for. In Ecuador, state hospitals spent, according to the court 614.917 dollars for body bags, which had a market value of 46.910, and the Director of the civil protection bought overpriced food rations. In Honduras, almost a Million dollars disappeared to the anti-korruptionsrat according to auxiliary funds, in Argentina, a middle-man bought obsolete N-95 masks for ten times the market price.

A quarter of the money seeps away

The health sector, corruption is already in normal times, is particularly vulnerable. A survey by the anti-corruption expert, Roberto de Michele of the BID, according to percolate up to 25 per cent of national health budgets. What is new is that the pandemic has caused the civil society and the media on the Plan. Almost in real time, they monitor their governments and to investigate abuse. Media such as the Portal Intercept in Brazil, citizens ' organizations such as "Mexicanos contra la Corrupción e Impunidad" or the "Fundación Paz y Reconciliación" (Colombia) have earned the transparency and the Ruling is unpopular made.

"in the past, we had to wait often months or years, until something came to the light of day," says Delia Ferreira, Chairman of Transparency International in a press briefing via video chat. Meanwhile, the public pressure grew, and the tolerance for corrupt practices declined. With pot lid-concerts Panamanians forced, for example, the resignation of the Vice-President. Beleaguered governments turn for assistance to the organisations like Transparency. "Currently, our Expertise is more in demand than ever, and doors that were previously closed," said Ferreira will open.

Modern technology facilitates the Monitoring of the state servant. Paraguay, for example, has created an Online platform where users almost in real time, can see how much the government spends in combating the pandemic for what. Some Brazilian States also model their data into the network, including Pernambuco, Ceará and Espiritú Santo, has established the Foundation Open Knowledge Brasil. In Colombia, the centralized purchasing platform Colombia Compra has issued Eficiente guidelines for transparency in the pandemic.

Sabotage from the very top

As much openness is not at all well: In El Salvador, for example, sabotaged President Nayib Bukele, a parliamentary-style Committee should monitor the two-billion-US-Dollar Corona and parcel of. After you have got submitted after two months, still no bill, resigned to the representatives of the civil society. Also in Mexico, the lack of transparency in the System: 84 percent of all Mexican Federal States, did not disclose how much they spend for what in the fight against the pandemic have identified the organizations, Transparencia Mexicana, and Tojil. has In Bolivia, a judge was taken suddenly, shortly before he wanted to interrogate the accused, the Minister of health. And even in Paraguay, phones of journalists and opposition were spying on Ellen, the fraud in the Import of medical equipment examined.

But despite all the setbacks, Delia Ferreira of Transparency International, is confident: "We now have a Chance to make the transparency leap forward."

*The post "How is the Corona-crisis, dealing with corruption in Latin America" will be changed published by Deutsche Welle. Contact with the executives here.

Deutsche Welle
Updated Date: 02 June 2020, 13:26

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