1. Muhammad Azam Roomi is Senior Lecturer and Director of Research, Centre for Women's Enterprise at University of Bedfordshire Business School, Luton, UK. 1. Guy Parrott
1. Guy Parrott is Senior Lecturer and Fellow at University of Bedfordshire Business School, Luton, UK. Abstract
In Pakistan, women entrepreneurs do not enjoy the same opportunities as men due to a number of deep-rooted discriminatory socio-cultural values and traditions. Furthermore, these restrictions can be observed within the support mechanisms that exist to assist such fledgling businesswomen. The economic potential of female entrepreneurs is not being realised as they suffer from a lack of access to capital, land, business premises, information technology, training and agency assistance. Inherent attitudes of a patriarchal society, that men are superior to women and that women are best suited to be homemakers, create formidable challenges. Women also receive little encouragement from some male family members, resulting in limited spatial mobility and a dearth of social capital. The research suggests that in order to foster development, multi-agency cooperation is required. The media, educational policy makers and government agencies could combine to provide women with improved access to business development services and facilitate local, regional and national networks. This would help integration of women entrepreneurs into the mainstream economy Corruption in Pakistan hurts common People and Breeds Extremism 23 01 2010
By Khalid Hashmani
The Transparency International has ranked Pakistan 139th among 180 countries in its 2009 Corruption Perception Index (CPI) issued in November 2009 (http://www.guardian.co.uk/news/datablog/2009/nov/17/corruption-index-transparency-international#data). Pakistan’s 2009 vs. 2008 score further reduced by 0.1 (2.4 vs. 2.5). A recent World Bank report lists corruption and lack of transparency as the two core reasons that hamper Pakistan’s drive for development. However, these indices do not convey the terrible pain and sufferings that the brutal practice of corruption has caused to common people of Pakistan. Many people in Pakistan believe that much of the development and a significant portion of the operations allocations are lost due to bribery and other related illegal and unethical activities. The extreme poverty and lack of infrastructure and basic services in the rural areas of Sindh and Balochistan is in part fueled by bribery, influence peddling, extortion, and abuse of power. The people of Pakistan and the international donors must rise to the occasion and start pressuring the Pakistangovernment to curtail corruption and to improve governance. Failure to do so in a timely manner will continue to frustrate poor people and make them weary of the current democratic system and drive them to extremism. What Constitutes Corruption?
The most comprehensive definition of “corruption” can be found at the web site of the Global Infrastructure Anti Corruption Center (GIACC) http://www.giaccentre.org. It says “In its wider sense, corruption includes one or more of bribery, extortion, fraud, deception, collusion, cartels, abuse of power, embezzlement, trading in influence and money laundering.” The underlying motive of corruption is to provide some one unfair advantage at the expense of either another individual entity (person or corporate) or a collective entity (country, province, city, community or company). In all cases, it is illegal, dishonest, and/or unethical. A bribe may be a cash payment or a gift item of considerable value. Examples of Corruption in Pakistan
A government official or government Minister or his/her business partner receiving money in exchange for awarding a contract, job, promotion or approving invoices for payment (an example that involves Bribery and Abuse of Power and may...