Righteousness exalts a nation, but sin is a reproach to any people.
Main Prayer Focus of the Week:
- That God will judge the menace of corruption in Ugandan society and bring down the corrupt in the country from places of influence
- That righteousness will be established as the foundation of doing business in Uganda
- That God will raise up righteous leaders in business and industry
Corruption is defined as the misuse of power, whether in the form of money or authority, to achieve certain goals in illegal, dishonest or unfair ways. The Inspectorate of Government Act defines it as the abuse of public office for private gain – embezzlement, bribery, nepotism, financial loss, property loss or false accounting. Countries with high levels of corruption are not capable of prospering as much as those with lower levels of corruption. A corrupted nation’s political and economic operations cause its entire society to suffer as a result. According to the World Bank, the average income in countries with a high level of corruption is about a third of that of countries with a low degree of corruption. Also, the infant mortality rate in such countries is about three times higher and the literacy rate is 25% lower.
Governments all over the world suffer from corruption. Uganda is seriously plagued with this vice. Though Uganda has very good anti-corruption laws, policies and institutions such as the IG, DPP, and Anti Corruption Court, the general institutional breakdown has resulted in inadequate supervision, weak checks, and controls. The result is corruption at all levels, both in central and local government covering aspects such as recruitment of personnel, procurement, and activity implementation.
The Ten Commandments can be summarized as follows:
- You shall have no other gods before Me.
- You shall not make idols.
- You shall not take the name of the LORD your God in vain.
- Remember the Sabbath day, to keep it holy.
- Honor your father and your mother.
- You shall not murder.
- You shall not commit adultery.
- You shall not steal.
- You shall not bear false witness against your neighbor.
- You shall not covet.
Corruption is a breach of the first and second commandment – the corrupt have made money and wealth their god. Corruption is also a violation of eighth and tenth commandment and becomes a springboard for the breaching of all the other commandments. As Apostle Paul admonished Timothy:
10For the love of money is a root of all kinds of evil, for which some have strayed from the faith in their greediness, and pierced themselves through with many sorrows.
1 Timothy 6:10
When the door to corruption opens in one’s life, morals, integrity, ethical values, character and uprightness begin to break down and collapsed. The Scriptures state that bribery and corruption not only blind even the wise, they also twist the words of the righteous.
Appoint judges and officials for each of your tribes in every town the LORD your God is giving you, and they shall judge the people fairly. Do not pervert justice or show partiality. Do not accept a bribe, for a bribe blinds the eyes of the wise and twists the words of the righteous. Follow justice and justice alone, so that you may live and possess the land the LORD your God is giving you. Do not set up any wooden Asherah pole beside the altar you build to the LORD your God and do not erect a sacred stone, for these the LORD your God hates.
Types of Corruption
Grand corruption involves large government bodies. Examples in recent times include the Uganda National Road Authority Commission that unearthed massive losses in the road sector over 8 years, the loss of UGX 5 billion intended for the purchase of bicycles for local officials in 2011, the misappropriation of money intended to implement the national identity registration exercise in 2011, the loss of UGX 58 billion within the Office of the Prime Minister in 2012, and the payment of 24.7 billion to a fictitious firm for the construction of Mukono-Katosi-Nyenga Road. No country can expect to develop when these kinds of scams are prevalent, and those caught are not severally punished.
Structured corruption consists of elaborate schemes arranged by both the public and private sector players to clean up swindles, and steal money public funds in a manner that is difficult to challenge legally. Political corruption involves leaders directly doing things for personal benefit, like fraudulently awarding contracts to companies they have interests in or from whom they have received bribes or hope to get kick backs. Another example is vote buying. As a result of irregularities in the last elections, the Electoral Commission spent about UGX 300 million to organize by-elections for canceled results – a significant drain on scarce national resources.
Petty corruption occurs at the individual level, for example, bribery of police officers. According to the Inspectorate of Government, 17 percent of surveyed Ugandans report having to pay a bribe in the past 12 months to a public servant to access a service that should have been provided without charge. The total value of these small bribes in 2014 was approximately UGX 167 billion.
The Constitution of Uganda
Objective XXVI of the National Objectives and Directive Principles of State Policy enshrined in the Constitution of Uganda states:
- All public offices shall be held in trust for the people.
- All persons placed in positions of leadership and responsibility shall in their work, be answerable to the people.
- All lawful measures shall be taken to expose, combat and eradicate corruption and abuse or misuse of power by those holding political and other public offices.
The corrupt break both the Laws of God and the laws of the land.
If you didn’t participate in Week One, take some time to repent of personal sins in this regard.
INSTITUTIONS PRAYER FOCUS FOR WEEK TWO
Pray for these institutions using the prayer guidelines in Chapter One:
- Inspectorate of Government
- Ministry of Finance Planning and Economic Development
- Directorate of Ethics and Integrity
- Office of the Auditor General
- Public Accounts Committee of Parliament
- The Committee on Commissions, Statutory Authorities and State Enterprises – Parliament of Uganda
- Public Procurement and Disposal of Public Assets Authority
- Directorate of Public Prosecution
- Uganda Police Force
- Uganda Prisons Service
- Anti Corruption Coalition of Uganda: made up of the following groups: Uganda Debt Network, MS Uganda, Oxfam GB, Transparency International – Uganda, FIDA – Uganda, Uganda Women’s Network (UWONET), DENIVA, UCAA, FABIO and UNATU.
- Office of the President
- Office of the Prime Minister
- The Civil Service
- Parliament of Uganda
- Ministry of Public Service
- Ministry of Local Government
In a prayer meeting, the different institutions can be divided up between the people praying so that they are all covered at the same time.