Islamabad [Pakistan], January 26 (ANI): The perception of corruption in Pakistan has worsened under the Imran Khan-led PTI government. The country has lost 16 places to rank 140th out of 180 countries surveyed by watchdog Transparency International (TI).
Opposition politicians were quick to join the chorus of critical voices, terming the Corruption Perception Index (CPI) report "a charge sheet against PM Khan" and calling on him to resign, reported Dawn.
Leader of the Opposition in the National Assembly Shehbaz Sharif said the PTI govt "has broken all records of corruption in the last 20 years. Among the Asia-Pacific region, Pakistan has unfortunately been ranked as the 5th most corrupt country."His niece and PML-N vice president Maryam Nawaz declared the Imran Khan government "the most corrupt government in Pakistan's history", claiming that every sector had witnessed a decline during his reign, reported Dawn.
Punjab Assembly opposition leader Hamza Shehbaz said that Imran Khan's anti-corruption slogans were merely a front for targeting the opposition after coming to power, while the party's information secretary Marriyum Aurangzeb asked the premier to address the nation and answer their questions over the latest TI report.
Zulfiqar Ali Bader, spokesperson for Pakistan Peoples Party chairman Bilawal Bhutto Zardari said that after the publication of this report, there was no justification for Imran Khan to remain in government.
"Imran Khan came to power with the slogan of ending corruption but now, with corruption increasing, he should go home," he said.
Former prime minister Shahid Khaqan Abbasi went as far as to declare PM Khan "the most corrupt prime minister in the history of Pakistan", reported Dawn.
PPP MNA Shazia Marri termed Imran Khan past claims that he would root out corruption from the country had proven to be lies.
She pointed out that it was under PTI rule that the KP Accountability Commission was abolished.
In 2020, Pakistan's CPI was 31 and it was ranked 124th out of 180 countries, but this year that score has fallen to 28.
Looking at scores from previous years, Pakistan's CPI ranking has been on the decline: in 2020, the country was ranked 124th out of 180 countries, 120th in 2019 and 117th in 2018, reported Dawn.
According to the report, CPI ranks 180 countries and territories by their perceived levels of public sector corruption on a scale of zero (highly corrupt) to 100 (very clean).
The report used eight data sources to calculate the CPI for Pakistan: Bertelsmann Foundation Transformation index, Economist Intelligence Unit country ratings, Global Insights Country Risk ratings, PRS International Country Risk Guide, Varieties of Democracy Project, World Bank CPIA, World Economic Forum EOS and the World Justice Project Rule of Law Index. (ANI)