Corruption in the water sector is a major problem and reduces the effectiveness of efforts to attain the Millennium Development Goals (MDGs) in drinking water and sanitation. It results in higher costs to society because it increases costs of water service provision and weakens the quality of services. People of limited economic means are especially affected: fewer infrastructures are built because of over-pricing, leaving the poorest families without water services. The results of this desk study, commissioned by UNDP in 2010, show that corruption can be found in all water subsectors: drinking water and sanitation, irrigation, water resources management and hydropower. Different forms of grand corruption include collusion, policy capture by the elite, embezzlement of government assets and funds, bribery in international deals, bid rigging and nepotism. A notable example of grand corruption discussed in this reported occurred in the Lesotho Highlands Water Project. The chief executive of the project was sentenced 15 years in of imprisonment in 2002 after illegally receiving US$6 million from international construction companies. Many other examples exist, but prosecution rates are low. Petty corruption in the water sector includes extortion of bribes for water connections and water use licenses. Poor water quality monitoring and low levels of sanctioning water pollution can also be related to corruption.
Fuente: Programa de las Naciones Unidas para el Desarrollo (PNUD)