Thursday, April 25, 2019

Corruption is a cause or symptom of Government Inefficiency- Challenge for Imran Khan

Asad Umar putting up a great fight against the vested interests in the country,  and IK buckling under pressure is a very simplistic explanation of a more fundamental issue plaguing our governance: The fundamental issue at stake is the debunking of the fallacious assumption that "corruption is the  primary reason for our economic downslide".  Asad Umar's economic performance demonstrates the negation of this fallacious assumption. Corruption is not the cause, but "incompetence" of the Competent Authority is the primary cause of our economic downslide. Corruption is only a symptom but definitely not the cause. Hence, presence of smart, forthright but incompetent leaders has further plunged the country into an abyss.

Corruption exists because the bureaucracy continues to make rules and regulations that are in the form of notifications spread over last seven decades and buried in files which are not known in their entirety to even the most senior bureaucrats. Bureaucracy can pull out a notification of their choice from this maze at will to justify any decision or to block any process at will. Kickbacks are the only wheels through which files can travel through this maze. 

The solution is not to go after corruption with NAB sledgehammer as it effectively grinds to the halt all bureaucracy, as is the case today. But the solution is massive BPR (Business Process Re-engineering) and change management. This requires compilation of all the notification in one place and (i) their organization and then (ii) their simplification as per Hammer and Champy's BPR definition, (iv)  automation i.e computerized movement of all files and notes, and  then their (v) transparency ie visibility of approval process, noting, decisions at every step to all stakeholders.
This is a hugely complex, tedious and difficult project. Even Dr Ishrat's public service reforms project is tweaking the "structure" but ignoring the "processes". It is going to fail like all other previous efforts because of (1) change resistance, (2) it does not address the core issue of BPR.

See other posts on Corruption: 

  1. Can Corruption Problem be Solved by Hanging a Few Thousands?
  2. Can Corruption be Eliminated by Hanging a few Thousands through Panama Case like Judgments
  3. Corruption is a cause or symptom of Government Inefficiency- Challenge for Imran Khan
  4. Covey's First Habit Advice to Proponents of Corruption Eradication First 
  5. How Corruption is being Eliminated in Pakistan since 1950s: Corruption as a Ruse to Maintain Status Quo
  6. How to Eliminate Corruption in Pakistan: Simplicity and Transparency of Bureaucratic Procedures
  7. It is not corruption but incompetence and inefficiency that is the fundamental problem of third world countries 

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