According to the UN, these 5 following issues are outlined to be considered as some of the most pressing matters occurring globally that puts safety and equality in societies at stake. These are: Climate change, corruption, violence, security/well being and the lack of education. While I personally conceive all of the following thwart our growth as people and the development of our world, the issue that projected most to me was in fact corruption.

Well what is corruption in simple terms? As defined in terms of politics, it is dishonest or fraudulent conduct by those in power. But within these words, I do not think you can grasp the convoluted atrocity on this issue, the inexcusable transgression of this issue. Problems like these simply can’t be defined in a few sentences. They don’t illustrate why this matter is inflicting millions and most notably, it doesn’t epitomise the dejection of those affected.

Some contradict the idea that our reformed society knows better and has learnt from mistakes in the past. Yet, why is there a myriad of wrongdoings still to this day? Not only by those in power, but the people in our everyday lifes, including ourselves. We can see this from the alarming augmentation  in drug trafficking, nepotism, flawed judicial systems and the heinous exploitation of the youth occurring every second of every day. All the following would not be possible without corruption. It varies in atrocity, from favouring one over another due to physical appearances or their class all the way to extortion and inflicting trauma amongst those who are vulnerable and thin-skinned in society. Eventually the aftermath of all this is simple- it’s anarchy.

Does it still not strike out to you? Does it still not fixate in your mind as a matter in which change needs to be executed at an instant. Well what I’m about to announce will unequivocally conquer that insight. 

Corruption, bribery, theft and tax evasion, cost developing countries US $1.26 trillion per year, which is equivalent to the economies of Switzerland, South Africa and Belgium combined. This amount of money could lift the 1.4 billion people living on less than $1.25 a day above this threshold for at least six years. Unmarried pregnant girls in Uganda get sent to Uganda’s Punishment island where they’re left to die. In Sudan, young girls are wed in return for cows. Cows!

Have these calamities been abolished and dealt with to a serious extent? No. That’s the actuality. And will it ever be?

I personally think that this issue outlined by the UN is illicitly flourishing in a way which is sadly concealed and sometimes also displayed to society. It only manifests as time goes on, if people that have been coerced and terrorized by the people branded ‘elite’ in our society still remain powerless in their rights to embellish change. As said in in a TED Talk in 2013 by the songwriter Bono, ‘The worst disease in this world today is corruption. And there is a cure:transparency’.

The question I leave to everyone is how can you make your own contribution towards progressive change for this escalating issue. As of now, it’s clear we don’t have the full power to intervene on this globally, but the little things stand out in importance just as much. Don’t agonise another even if you may have the power or privilege to do so, intervene in any acts showing bribery or discrimination. And finally one key thing to keep fixated in your head is that ‘Money, if misused can be the roots for corruption. All it needs is a little water which could in fact be votes in an election or propaganda. But once the water is added, it can bore a plant of toxicity in our world, releasing nihilism and misconduct in the air we breathe.

Bhavna Bhaskaran, GGSK COLLEGE