Free Essay Example on Corruption in Somalia

Published: 2023-03-05
Free Essay Example on Corruption in Somalia
Type of paper:  Essay
Categories:  Problem solving Government World Public administration
Pages: 7
Wordcount: 1733 words
15 min read

The development of a country requires many integrated factors and avoidance of issues that drag the desire to develop behind, such as corruption. Several economic development issues hinder developing countries. The hindrances make it impossible for low-income countries to transform their economies. Many of the sub-Saharan countries in Africa are victims of several development issues. Corruption is the primary economic challenge in these developing economies since the beginning of the post-colonial period. Somalia is an African country and a member of the Arab States League. In the last centuries, the country has been considered as one of the significant world trade among the ancient world. However, the country's potential to be among the most developed nations on the continent, the Arab world, and the universe has been crippled due to the corruption nature in main sectors, which boosts the economy. Therefore, since Somalia is a country with corruption in almost all of its major industries, this paper aims at applying the acquired knowledge of developmental issues of the economy to come up with possible policy solutions for a developing country Somalia.

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Importance of Discussing Corruption Issue in Somalia

Somalia has, for many years, been suffered from the effects of corruption, which hinders her social and economic development (Abumousa, 2019). In almost all aspects of her society that is economical, institutional, and political, corruption is a primary concern and hindrance to the development of any of her sector. Somalia's efforts to build her state, enhance democracy, human rights and natural justice have become weak, leaving her people to suffocate in extreme poverty, injustices, and violation of their rights. This brings on a cycle of more economic problems, which results in countless violent crimes and heartless terrorist acts (Abumousa, 2019). The main question when it comes to corruption is whether it exists as a result of unavoidable effects of failure of the government to play its role in governance and control. Many years of weak and incompetent governance could also be an aspect to blame for consequent and continued looting of the nation's resources through corruption.

High corruption levels in a country lead to poor performance in the economy. Economic development is halted due to a reduction in the foreign direct investment, extravagant government expenditure as well as reduction in the domestic investment (Wei, & Shang-Jin, 2016). The government may also be involved in corruption through the diversion of funds away from the education, infrastructure, and health sectors to less significant public projects which are manipulatable.

Somalia is among the most corrupt countries in the world (Somalia Corruption Report, 2016). The issue of corruption is of much importance in Somalia because the areas which are most significant to the progress of the country are the most vulnerable to corruption. Tolerating illegal operations in the country by corrupt government personnel through accepting bribes is a restriction to the fight against corruption (Somalia Corruption Report, 2016). The existing institutions in the country are dysfunctional, thus creating an environment of lawlessness and at the same time, hinders the establishment and prosperity of competitive and effective ethical economics enterprises. Tight monopolies dominate Somalia's economy due to the existence of patronage links (Somalia Corruption Report, 2016).

Corruption manifests itself in several ways, such as bribery, embezzlement of funds, favoritism, and abuse of public offices. Although all of these corruption-related activities are criminalized by Somalia's constitutional, the implementation of measures stipulated in the provisional constitution seems not to exist (Somalia Corruption Report, 2016). The elites with the responsibilities of governing the country are, in most cases, involved in the embezzlement of public resources. Transparency rarely exists in Somalia, especially in public procurement, due to the frequent involvement of corruption.

The above corruption examples show that the essence of dealing with corruption in Somalia. In the public service, Somalia once experienced a total collapse of her institutions in the year 1991 (Somalia Corruption Report, 2016). Aftermath, the attempts to re-construct its public institutions have been jeopardized by unending armed violence and rampant corruption. Somalia lacks institutional and legal frameworks to regulate her markets. Corruption has resulted in patronage networking, thus eliminating competition in the market, making Somalia be economically controlled by only those with close ties with the ruling elites (Somalia Corruption Report, 2016).

Somalia lacks a system of tax administration due to corruption (Somalia Corruption Report, 2016). Major businesses carry out their operations in an informal manner; this means that their returns go untaxed, thus affecting the national gross domestic products and the general economy. Since parts of Somalia are under the control of rebels who are the leading cause of insecurity in the country, the government has no capacity whatsoever to collect taxes neither nor control the country's main territories. Warlords, as well as the rebel groups, have gone to the extent of establishing their systems of tax collection. Businesspeople and other traders are operating under the rebel's control pay taxes to the rebel groups.

Corruption is the main symptom of the numerous ills in Somalia. The war against corruption should be prioritized. "Corruption is like cancer, retarding economic development" (Wei, & Shang-Jin, 2016). As laws and law enforcement are necessary, serious nations should ensure that they pay attention to the reforming of their governments in the economy, which will aid in the fight against corruption.

Empirical Evidence to Justify Corruption in Somalia

Somalia ranks among the most corrupt countries in the world. Corruption in the country is manifested through corrupt government officials tolerating illegal activities in return for bribes. Besides, corruption is also revealed through bribery in procurement contracts. This, therefore, affects economic development due to a lack of quality goods and services from the procurement institutions. Corruption in Somalia is prevalent in the following areas

Judicial systems

Businesspeople in Somalia encounter corruption when dealing with courts. The legal systems face political interference and are highly influenced by corrupt officials and thus making them ineffective. Generally, the civil courts in the country are almost nonfunctional since the Somalia authorities often disregard the orders from such courts

Land Administration

Authorities in Somalia are incapable of protecting the rights of property. The reconstruction challenges efforts faced by the country has been fueled by conflicts for title deeds due to forgery and unavailability of the title deeds to some groups (Somalia Corruption Report, 2016). Corruption in the land administration in the country is highly characterized by forced evictions and the absence of title deeds. The country lacks a functioning land registry.

Public Procurement

Public tenders in Somalia are treated with a lot of confidentiality - secret contrasting. The tendering processes lack transparency. Besides, some regional entities in the country have closed contracts with some oil companies independently from the government.

Free resources have been diverted frequently and misappropriated due to corruption. In some cases, 80% of payments made by the Central bank of Somalia was to private individuals for non-business reasons. According to the Somalia Corruption report (2016), the bank governor of Somalia resigned in 2016 after details of the corruption cases regarding him were revealed to the public.

Natural Resources

Insecurity and corruption cases characterize Natural Resources companies. The natural resources sector has been unregulated, specifically the petroleum industry. The industry is challenged by a lack of a certified regulatory system and widespread corruption. Further evidence indicated that the ministry of fisheries has been transferring money from the sale of fish to secluded ministerial banks in Djibouti (Abumousa, 2019). As such, the evidence suggests that there has been rampant corruption in the Somali Natural resources sector.


The legal framework in a country depends on the constitution, which prohibits the abuse of officials, bribery, funds embezzlement, and the influence of trading. However, in Somali, the anti-corruption laws have been ineffective, and government executives practice corruption with impunity (Somalia Corruption Report, 2016). Governance practices in the country are informal and are often based on clientelist and patronage networks serving individual affiliations and interests. The misappropriation of public funds hampers State-building efforts. Further, the country lacks a developed revenue system.

Civil Society

The constitution protects freedom of speech and press, but the Somalia government officials violate the rights (Abumousa, 2019). Generally, Somalia is the most dangerous country in the globe due to increased terrorist activities. The armed groups undermine the freedom of speech in the country with the civil activists being the victims of the frequent attacks


Impunity is widespread in the Somali Police force, therefore, making them ineffective. Companies in the country often find themselves cooperating with violent individuals and groups to safeguard their properties. Army leaders inflate troop numbers to acquire more significant funding. For instance, according to the Somalia Corruption Report (2015), President Hassan Sheikh Mohamud ordered the replacement of armed forces chief due to rampant corruption and misappropriation of funds in the army in 2015.

Justification of the Need to Address the Problem

Improve Healthcare

Inadequate healthcare systems in Somalia can be attributed to the high levels of corruption in the country. Corruption in health sectors is seen in different forms. For instance, free payment from the patients for the services that should be rendered free to them. Patients are forced to make payments for meals, medicines, and sometimes beddings. Generally, informal amount signifies corruption if they involve cash and other expensive items and if they are paid before a service is rendered for unspecified reasons. Corruption in the health sector can also be seen through the worker's absenteeism to engage in private works during the working hours.

It is reported that absenteeism is high among qualified staff. As such, the absenteeism increases the workload on the remaining staff, further. Addressing corruption in the country would help to address issues resulting from fraud, such as embezzlement and theft of healthcare funds, manipulation of data outcome, absenteeism, and informal payments from the patients. As such, the health center would be able to offer quality care at all times to the Somalia citizens.

Improve Education

Corruption harms the quality of education in third world countries such as Somalia. For instance, corruption in the country is evidenced by bribery in the recruitment and promotion of teachers. This affects the quality of education in the country since most of the hired teachers do not meet the criteria or the quality standards set aside by the ministry of education. Further, the embezzlement of funds set aside for the development of educational programs in the company affects the sector and limits its growth. Therefore, addressing the issue of corruption would be significant in the improvement of quality education and thus enhancing professionalism in the country.

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