The Singapore government keeps the salaries of politicians and civil servants high in order to prevent talented, honest Singaporeans from leaving and to stifle the economic incentive to engage in corrupt activity. By tackling both the policing and financial factors of corruption, the payoff of corrupt activity is shifted from a low risk, high reward to high risk, low reward. In the 1980s Lee enacted salary raises for senior level government officials and politicians. This was a pragmatic way of keeping the high level corruption at bay. This was enhanced repeatedly in 1973, 1979, 1982, 1989 and 1994 to bring the salaries on par with the well paid private sector. He was severely criticized by the public and media. It was said that his pay was higher than that of the US President and senior members of the civil service earned more than four times of what their US Federal counterparts earned. He took it on the stride and implemented his policies and had the last ...
... middle of paper ...
... must be incorruptible
• the anti-corruption agency must be removed from police control
• opportunities for corruption in vulnerable agencies must be reduced
• corruption must be reduced by raising salaries if a country can afford to do so (Quah 1999).
The importance of sustaining the anti-corruption movement is succinctly put as follows by Mr. Lee Kuan Yew: “There is no greater compliment that a man can pay to himself and to his group than to pass the torch on to like-minded people, fired by the same ideals, but younger, more vigorous, more capable to meet a more contemporary situation.” and “We have not become decadent and corrupt after 41 years in office. The old guard sets high standards; the new guard has to maintain this self-discipline and integrity in the midst of growing affluence. Otherwise, the Singapore story will not have a happy ending.” (Yak, n.d.)
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