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Vietnamese Are Becoming More Tolerant of Corruption: UN Study

A massive study by the United Nations Development Programme (UNDP) has highlighted increasing acceptance of corruption among Vietnamese citizens.

Vietnam News reports that the UNDP’s Vietnam Provincial Governance and Public Administration Performance Index surveyed nearly 75,000 people from 63 cities and provinces over seven years. The research highlighted several worrying national trends.

For example, the number of people speaking out about corruption when they encountered it in Ho Chi Minh City fell from 12.5% in 2011 to just 2.3% last year. Meanwhile, none of the survey respondents in Hanoi reported corruption to the authorities, the news source shares.

Other figures showed that just 28-47% of respondents from different provinces said that they didn’t have to pay a bribe when using public health care at district hospitals. In a similar vein, only 36-59% of participants shared that bribery does not occur at primary schools.

According to Vietnam News, the Penal Code stipulates that anyone who abuses their authority to receive benefits in any form worth at least VND2 million can be accused of taking a bribe. However, the study showed that tolerance for bribes surged from 2014 to 2015, with most victims of corruption claiming that they would only report a case if the bribe was worth around VND24 million.

The paper quoted UNDP policy analyst Do Thi Thanh Huyen, who said “those figures reflected an increasing tendency of Vietnamese in getting used to corruption.” She went on, explaining that “corruption still exists and is getting worse despite determined efforts from the highest level to eradicate it. If the corrupt acts persist, people are likely to fall into depression, increasingly drawing the poor away from social development while increasing feelings of injustice and exerting negative impacts on public confidence in those in power.”

Meanwhile, Vietnam ranked 112th in Transparency International’s 2015 Corruption Perceptions Index, tied with Malawi and Mozambique, and just ahead of Pakistan.

[Photo via NBC]

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