Corruption may include many activities including bribery and embezzlement, though it may also involve practices that are legal in many countries. Political corruption occurs when an office-holder or other governmental employee acts in an official capacity for personal gain. Corruption is most commonplace in kleptocracies, oligarchies, narco-states and mafia states.
Corruption can occur on different scales. Corruption ranges from small favours between a small number of people (petty corruption), to corruption that affects the government on a large scale (grand corruption), and corruption that is so prevalent that it is part of the everyday structure of society, including corruption as one of the symptoms of organised crime.
Petty corruption occurs at a smaller scale and takes place at the implementation end of public services when public officials meet the public. For example, in many small places such as registration offices, police stations, state licensing boards, and many other private and government sectors.
Grand corruption is defined as corruption occurring at the highest levels of government in a way that requires significant subversion of the political, legal and economic systems. Such corruption is commonly found in countries with authoritarian or dictatorial governments but also in those without adequate policing of corruption.
The government system in many countries is divided into the legislative, executive and judiciary branches in an attempt to provide independent services that are less subject to grand corruption due to their independence from one another.
Systemic corruption (or endemic corruption) is corruption which is primarily due to the weaknesses of an organisation or process. It can be contrasted with individual officials or agents who act corruptly within the system.
Factors which encourage systemic corruption include conflicting incentives, discretionary powers; monopolistic powers; lack of transparency; low pay; and a culture of impunity. Specific acts of corruption include bribery, extortion, and embezzlement in a system where corruption becomes the rule rather than the exception.
We should give our new president thumps up for what he has been doing during the last four years. He and his Prime Minister have been running the country in a way that the President himself likes. He has been sending out clear massages to all friends and enemies as to how he would like to see the country run. Looting public property and avoiding paying taxes are not hallmarks of the capitalist system just as they are not hallmarks of the socialist system.
In an effort to combat corruption and cultivate culture of ethical conduct amongst public officials, The government has directed all its employees to sign integrity pledges.
In general, corruption is a form of dishonesty or criminal activity undertaken by a person or organisation entrusted with a position of authority, often to acquire illicit benefit.