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Top 10 Countries with the Most Corruption

VO: Rebecca Brayton
Script written by Kurt Hvorup Many nations are run with the best of intentions – these ones, not so much. Join WatchMojo.comsuggest as we count down our picks for the top 10 countries with the most corruption. For this list, we're taking a look at countries around the globe where political corruption is most notable. Special thanks to our users Eddy Alvarez, wendelao, Kwento Mo Sa Pagong, ktc814 and ViolaCello for submitting the idea using our interactive suggestion tool at WatchMojo.comsuggest.

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Script written by Kurt Hvorup

Top 10 Countries with the Most Corruption

Many nations are run with the best of intentions – these ones, not so much. Welcome to and today we’re counting down our picks for the top 10 countries with the most corruption.

For this list, we’re taking a look at countries around the globe where political corruption is most notable. From government officials abusing their station to corporations being granted frightening leeway, these nations serve as a reminder that power is not to be taken lightly.

#10: Russia Where to begin with the Russian Federation’s leadership? For a start, the Russian government has been tied to several questionable incidents, such as the jailing of Moscow politician and critic Alexei Navalny. Allegations have also been made of Russia’s leadership buying votes for the 2018 FIFA World Cup bid, and of their close ties to constructions companies who worked on the Sochi Olympics. Added to startling reports about the bribery rate for officials and the widespread nature ofcorruption, it paints a depressing picture of Russia.

#9: Libya

This appears to be what has transpired for Libya; caught up in the Arab Spring mass uprising that started in December 2010, the country quickly descended into civil war. Operated by an interim government caught between rebels and loyalists to the old government, Libya has become vulnerable to outside forces. Specifically, military figures and arms dealers are said to be taking advantage of the chaos, pitting citizens against one another in the ongoing violence and stealing valuable resources.

#8: Myanmar

Also referred to as Burma, this country in Southeast Asia has its fair share of issues regarding corruption of power. For one, a 2015 profile indicated Myanmar had one of the most underdeveloped economies in the world. This was attributed to a number of causes: long-time national stagnation, poor management on the government’s part... and the fact that the military controls various key industries. These problems have driven some people to flee Myanmar.

#7: Turkmenistan

Becoming an independent nation after the collapse of the Soviet Union, Turkmenistan grew out of a power vacuum... which has since helped define power distribution in the country. For instance, Turkmenistan was ruled for 21 years by Saparmurat Niyazov, the President for Life known for bizarre acts such as renaming months as he saw fit. In the present, the Turkmen government has gone in a more sinister direction; they directly control the nation’s natural resources, and seemingly permit misconduct in institutions such as prisons.

#6: Uzbekistan
Since gaining independence in 1991, Uzbekistan has had one president in power: Islam Karimov. The Karimov family and administration’s degree of control over thecountry is more than a little disturbing at times, especially considering reports of Karimov’s kin making deals with corporations. There have been allegations that theUzbek government both attempts to enforce traditions and resorts to bribery when dealing with international companies. Combine that with Uzbekistan’s questionable human rights record, and there’s no doubt that many will be prone to thinking that the country’s people deserve far better.

#5: Iraq

Having experienced two invasions by the American military within a fifteen-year period, Iraq’s destabilization isn’t as surprising as the willingness of some to take advantage of the chaotic atmosphere. Various groups fight for control amid questions of the Iraqi government’s legitimacy, made all the more complicated by theappearance of ISIS. The people of Iraq have been engaged in protests, with calls for reform and policy changes... but it remains to be seen if any good comes of it.

#4: Afghanistan

The Afghan government lacks strong leadership because it has struggled to keep groups such as Al-Qaeda from asserting control. Former president Hamid Karzai was reported to have accepted money from both the CIA and the government of Iran, with members of his family said to have gained influence through questionable means. From Afghanistan being one of the world’s top producers of opium to claims of administration communication with the Taliban, issues of power abuse abound.

#3: Sudan

Consider this: about half of Sudan’s population lives under the poverty line. Various factors have contributed to this state of affairs, such as South Sudan splitting off and taking control of the nation’s oil reserves. The main political party, the NCP, has implemented policies that impose strict limitations, exasperating Sudan’s economic issues. Sudan has also seen years of racial and cultural conflict, making for one more problem preventing a shift in thinking.

#2: North Korea

North Korea, also known as the Democratic People’s Republic of Korea, is most distinctly not democratic; it is ruled by Supreme Leader Kim Jong-un as a totalitarian state. Reports of the populace not receiving food and fuel abound, matched by indications that the government focuses more on military spending. Stories have cropped up of people being sent to prison camps or executed for questionable reasons. To top it off, the nation’s extreme security and censorship measures – such as real-time monitoring of text conversations – evokes terror no matter how one looks at it.

Before we unveil our top pick, here are a few honorable mentions:
- Democratic Republic of the Congo
- Zimbabwe
- Eritrea
- South Sudan
- Syria

#1: Somalia

Reports suggest that Somalia is operated by a loose government, leaving warlords, companies and other figures to use the unprecedented leeway to their own benefit. Foreign aid is said to be taken by the government for their own use, pirates are prone to attacking and claiming ships, and the country is tormented by the al-Shabaab movement. With corruption on all sides, it appears that things need to change and power needs to shift into more respectable hands.

Do you agree with our list? What nations do you feel are most corrupt? For more investigative Top 10s published daily, be sure to subscribe to

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