In times of humanitarian emergencies, we often ponder on how to gather resources so that we are in a better position to fight back and provide relief to the common masses. But seldom do we attempt to understand the impact other factors apart from funds can have on our response system in the event of a humanitarian crisis. One such factor is “corruption”.
It is known that corruption is wrong in many ways, it is a crime and also it is immoral. While we know that it causes serious damage to a nation’s growth and stability but what is to be understood in today’s times is that it is even more damaging in times of a crisis like the today.
Many people belonging to both the public and private arena are taking advantage of the present circumstances. Amidst the chaos created by the virus, funds are being used for personal gains and corrupt people are taking advantage of inadequate anti-corruption mechanisms and lack of transparency and are diverting funds away from people in these crucial times. Lack of government action is resulting in goods and food products being sold at unscrupulous prices.
Also, defective ventilators, poorly manufactured tests or counterfeit medicines are hurting people in their worst moment, thereby denying them their chance to fight against this deadly disease.
In this paper we shall analyse the impact corruption has on a country’s response in times of humanitarian crisis and what are the direct and indirect costs undertaken by humanity because of corruption. Further, it is important to know that what is the international community’s efforts and legal mechanisms with respect to corruption and how different should our approach be in times of humanitarian crisis.
Also, this paper shall attempt to take lessons from the global battle against COVID-19 and the effect of corruption on it.