Mexican Officials Want Entrepreneurs To Help Stop Government Corruption
Mexican authorities, in collaboration with American counterparts, have launched a website to help small business owners report instances of government corruption.
The service, a collaboration between the Mexican Institute for Entrepreneurship and the U.S. Agency for International Development, allows business owners to report and post online anonymous claims of corruption.
The website, mapadecorrupcion.mx, is intended to discourages government officials from blackmailing or soliciting bribes from business owners filing for operating permits, said Alberto Saracho, head of C230, the consultancy that built it.
“This, hopefully, will create a space where it's cheap and easy to report something,” Saracho said. "We think of it as a Trip Advisor for authorities, where regular mom and pop shops could actually do an informal report of these types of situations."
The service could prevent situations like one developers encountered in their research process, Saracho said: a business owner told them she had complained to local authorities about an inspector trying to extort money from her. Local officials then told the business owner to take her complaint to the same inspector she was complaining about.
"And he basically said, ‘Go ahead, make another complaint and let's see who wins,'" Saracho said.
Saracho said the map will complement, though not replace, government investigations.