LONDON - Britain's Department for International Development has published for the first time plans to tackle the threat of "endemic corruption" in 29 priority countries, including Pakistan, Somalia and Nepal.
The anti-corruption plan for Pakistan, which is due to receive £971m between 2012-15, will involve support for Pakistan's Public Accounts Committee and its Election Commission.
"This will include calling more frequently for corruption to be tackled in regular direct dialogue with government, including discussions at Federal, provincial and individual programme level," reported Guardian newspaper.
Four-fifths of Pakistanis view government corruption as widespread. Transparency International ranked Pakistan 139 out of 176 countries in its corruption perception index. In an example of a DfID-backed initiative in Pakistan, every citizen who contacts Punjab province's Local Government, tax, police, health or education services will receive free automated calls or text messages where they can report if they were forced to pay bribe or experienced bad customer service.
During a three-year pilot, several corrupt officials were suspended or sacked.
DfID also plans to improve public financial management and support citizen initiatives in all partner countries, including Nepal, which will receive £4m from DfID for anti-corruption measures, channelled through the Asian Development Bank and the World Bank.