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Can Liberia Replicate the Singapore Experience in Curbing Entrenched and Systemic Corruption? A Comparative Analysis

Dr. Ambrues Monboe Nebo (D.Scs.)
Criminal Justice Department, Adventist University of West Africa.

Received: 28 May 2023; Accepted: 07 June 2023; Published: 04 July 2023

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Abstract: From a qualitative comparative analysis method, this article assesses the possibility of Liberia replicating the Singapore experience as one of the least corrupt Countries in the world. Regarding fighting corruption, the study identified commonalities shared by Liberia and Singapore but with a significant difference that constitutes the research findings. The findings revealed the following:
Unlike Singapore, the political will that is critical to the fight against corruption only manifests in the legislation of institutional and normative frameworks not in enforcement and adequate budgetary appropriation.
Unlike Singapore, Liberia lacks character education important for tackling corrupt behaviors from early ages, shaping students’ mind towards the danger of corruption, and producing excellent students with good moral behavior.
Unlike Singapore, ordinary people’s attitudes, mindsets, and behavior toward corruption remain critical to the fight against corruption in Liberia.
In the affirmative, the study concludes that Liberia can possibly replicate the Singapore experience provided it addresses the significant differences that are not utopia.

Keywords: Corruption, Character Education, Liberia, Singapore,

I. Introduction

Being so passionate about the devastating impact of entrenched and systemic corruption in Liberia, US Ambassador Michael A. McCarthy has through a comparative analysis offered what could be termed a workable therapy for fighting corruption retarding the socio-economic development of Liberia. In his analysis, Amb. McCarthy compared Liberia and Singapore’s early formation in the 1960s and how Singapore managed to change things around to have a per capita Gross Domestic Product that is now more than 130 times higher than Liberia (The Independent Probe Newspaper, 2023).
According to Amb. McCarthy which is a notorious fact, “Singapore is one of the wealthiest countries on earth, and their per capita Gross Domestic Product in 2022 had risen to $82,794”. In comparison, Liberia’s per capita Gross Domestic Product in 2022 was $630 (The Independent Probe Newspaper, 2023). Amb. McCarthy attributed the phenomenal success of Singapore to their resolve that corruption would no longer be accepted as a common culture (Smart News, 2023). Evidently, the Transparency International Corruption Perceptions Index (2022) has ranked Singapore as the 5th least corrupt country in the world out of 180 countries with a score of 83. Singapore continues to remain the only Asian country ranked in the top 10.