Business unusual: perceptions of corruption in South Africa
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Around three-quarters (74%) of all South Africans believe the incidence of corruption has increased in the past three years, while 10% feel it has declined and 12% report that it has remained unchanged over the period.
In recent years, there has been mounting attention and concern focused on corruption scandals involving the police, politicians and the nations' business elite, to the extent that Public Protector Thuli Madonsela recently proclaimed that the country has reached a tipping point in its battle against corruption. In this article, Steven Gordon, Ben Roberts, Jare Struwig and Siphesihle Dumisa examine public attitudes towards corruption in the country. The results show high levels of dissatisfaction with the problem and widespread support for tougher action.
To better understand attitudes towards corruption in South Africa, the authors used data from the 2011 South African Social Attitudes Survey (SASAS), conducted annually by the HSRC since 2003. The survey consists of nationally representative samples of South Africans aged 16 years and older living in private households. A total of 3 057 respondents took part in the 2011 survey which included a module of questions designed to reflect attitudes towards corruption.