Archive for October 1, 2008

Corruption as Viewed by Kazakhstani Students

The following are a few examples of corruption in education but also in the police force throughout Kazakhstan.


I saw many examples of corruption in Kazakhstan.  It is widespread and everybody thinks that it is a normal.  But most dishonest one was when I had taken our entrance exam for our university.  I was a witness of a complicated system:  a day before you have an answers, then you need to make it or invisible or not so large as they are.  I saw a girl who had a colorful line on her jeans.  Then I understood that this line is answers for 100 questions.  Green color was of “A”, blue for “B”, red for “C”, white for “D.”  I do not know what imagination humans need to have to do this!!!


Actually, corruption in Kazakhstan is a well known thing, it’s widespread.  You can see it every day.  Especially you can always see it in our “national” universities.  I’m glad that our university is not one of them, maybe there we have some corruption but not as widespread as in other universities.  The greatest example can be that of one of my friends, he is actually working but also studying at Kaz NU on a daily paid system, but he skips the classes and has “zero” attendance, but miraculously at the end of each term, you can see that he “attended” the classes.  Why?  The answer is simple, “Money, money, money,” as ABBA’s great song says. “Always sunny in the rich man’s world.”  Paying to the teacher for skipping the classes, it’s awful thing.  I just can’t imagine myself doing that.  Of course our government is trying to stop this, but actually they could not stop it before our people’s mentality will change.


Central Asian countries have a lot of corruption happening in every field varying from education, law to medicine.  I witnessed corruption a lot of time at customs, medical centers and more, but the most dishonest was the one related to education.  A lot of high school students entering the universities are proposed to pay money for admission to the universities without exams and if you pay more money you can get a scholarship.  I heard a lot of this kind of stories.  I think it’s so dishonest especially in relation to students who really want to study, have knowledge they got from studying for so much, and are poor and the only opportunity for them to study is with scholarship.  Corruption is everywhere in Central Asia and government can do hardly anything with it.  The only way is to provide good conditions for people and strict punishment.  But people always want more and more money, therefore I think that corruption will always exist in the world.


Since the post-Soviet countries are still at the early stages of developing and a big part of a population is still poor, there are a lot of cases of corruption.  When people get a good job position, they try to get as much as they can from it, to earn more money, to gain more power, to give job for their family members.  In Kazakhstan today, government tires to get rid of that by making salaries higher, and social security packages better, especially for people who work in places where corruption is more likely to occur.  Also, I know that in pretty much every ministry there is a term “rotation” which means that person should change his workplace every 2-5 years, for example, to move to another city.  That mostly happens with people in high positions so that they won’t gain much power in one region.


In my opinion, corruption against old people is the most disgusting!  Our grandmothers and grandfathers gave their lives to make our life better, they worked, they made money.  And how does the government remember it?  It gets them away from their apartments if they don’t pay for it!  What to pay from?  If they don’t see their “pensions!”  Can you live on 6,000 tenge per month: eat, drink, buy something and pay for the apartment?  I don’t think so.  Instead of searching to solve this problem, Kazakhstan politics forget about our grannies!  Even we remember about them only when its May 9!  But, actually, we wouldn’t live now so without those parental role that they played.


Corruption is the most awful way of destroying rules of government.  It is very uncontrolled rule and in our country, the most corruption place is police.  Especially how we call “djol polisice” This police corrupted so much, that everybody knows that they take money.  So, our government is trying to make any solution, but nothing changes.  They tried to make higher the price of law, but the police people also ask for more money.  So their money in corruption is improving.


As our history professor said, we are not ready yet to stop corruption because of our mentality.  Government tries to improve situation by increasing wages of people who work in government (doctors, teachers, policemen, etc.) We should start with not to pay the policemen, maybe we even don’t understand that when we pay to him we support corruption.  Because our market is not developed yet and we live in before market economy (society), we can’t fight with corruption in whole power.  We can’t wait when our government will improve situation, we must start from ourselves.


In my opinion, corruption exists in different spheres of work.  Especially in committee by National Safety, they should try to solve this problem.  On the contrary, they are involved in this by themselves.  One of our acquaintances was notstavucu ?  They did it in order to get money from him.  They accused him in taking money illegally from people, but even he didn’t do that.  He was a policeman.  Nowadays, Kazakhstan politics tries to help solve this problem, maybe it is only in words because it is continuing.


In Kazakhstan, there are a lot of corrupted police officers and special services.  And I think to make the system better, it is necessary to give them more money for their jobs but also to make punishments more hard.  For example, if someone earns enough money and the punishment for corruption is death, he will not take any illegal money from people.


Although Kazakhstan is supposed to be democratic state, there is a high level of corruption.  I have one good example, police corruption.  Every time me and my friends are stopped by the road police, we are giving money instead of taking a ticket.  And lots of policemen (majority, in fact) would rather take money than give a warning.

Actually, our politics try to solve corruption by making up new prohibits and punishments, but it is not going to work if our citizens won’t fight with it.

Even in that situation with police, sometimes people are to blame, because they give money before policeman even starts talking!  People need to understand that corruption is bad!


One of the corruptions I’ve heard a lot is that “Police” do their work only for money.  They take money as “fine” from every man.  Or on the road they look for any mistakes of drivers, and stop them and take money.  They do it, even though government has increased their salary.

Or even judges take money.  Of course, felonies want to have freedom and pay any sum, then just continue doing their “dirty” deals and crimes.


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