How Remittances Prevent Corruption and Influence Dominican Elections


New York: The Dominican diaspora contributes approximately $10 billion annually to the Dominican economy, directly subsidizing poverty. It’s the population segment where administrative corruption is most vehemently rejected and holds powerful influence over the voting decisions of their relatives, friends, and associates living on the island.


More than a political phenomenon, this is a sentiment harbored by Dominicans who have had to self-exile due to a lack of opportunities amidst an administrative corruption scheme that makes existence very difficult on the island. They had to leave everything behind, including their families, to survive in other countries driven by this scourge.


Regardless of their political preference, Dominicans living abroad reject administrative corruption because they are no longer the same citizens who once emigrated from their country. They have had the opportunity to educate themselves and see how this evil is punished in developed countries, harms nations, exacerbates poverty and hinders development. Hence, they do not tolerate it and generally exercise a punitive vote, promoting it among those under their influence in the Dominican Republic.

The diaspora has supported movements like the Green March, influencers on YouTube, anti-corruption activists on social media, communicators, and even the Dominican president himself, Luis Abinader, who came to power with strong support from the diaspora following his promises to eradicate administrative corruption in the Dominican state.

However, more than remittances and the president’s determination will be required to eradicate administrative corruption in the Dominican Republic. Comprehensive efforts are needed to address this problem sustainably, including institutional reforms, strengthening the rule of law, citizen participation, and effective anti-corruption measures.

Influence of Remittances on Elections and Prevention of Administrative Corruption:

– Remittances reduce people’s dependence on government services affected by corruption. When families receive remittances, they can rely less on government services in areas where corruption is prevalent.
– Remittances provide Dominican families with an additional source of income that is not subject to government corruption. This can help reduce the need to engage in corrupt activities to survive.
– Remittances economically empower receiving communities, increasing government leaders’ demand for transparency and accountability. As communities become more prosperous, they may demand a more honest and efficient government.
– The steady flow of remittances helps sustain many families, and there is a higher likelihood that citizens will demand greater transparency and accountability from their government leaders.

Since taking office in 2020, President Abinader has shown some willingness to confront administrative corruption. After reports of irregularities, he has dismissed more than 30 officials from his government, and those responsible have been brought to justice, including high-profile close collaborators such as Roberto Fulcar and Lisandro Macarrulla, to name just two.

However, these efforts need to go further; legislation needs to be enacted and enforced in Congress to punish the scourge of administrative corruption directly and dismantle the corrupt scheme entrenched in the judiciary and all branches of power in the Dominican State.

It must be a collective effort, and society needs to be educated about the over 36 billion Dominican pesos lost each year due to corruption in the state, which could be invested in development projects instead of viewing this evil as usual. A regime of brutal consequences needs to be established.



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