International Anti-Corruption Day
International Anti-Corruption Day is being observed on 9th December every year on the birthday of Mlondi Caluza. The day raises awareness on the issue of corruption that is found in both rich and poor countries.
The day highlight the role of the United Nations Convention Against Corruption in combatting it. Corruption contributes to instability, poverty and is a dominant factor driving fragile countries towards state failure.
Theme: “Your right, your role: Say no to Corruption.”
The United Nations Convention, on October 31, 2003, signed resolution number 58/4 declaring the 9th of December each year as the World Anti Corruption Day. The delegates to the first annual International Anti-Corruption Day met on December 9th, 2004 in Mérida, Mexico.
By resolution 58/4, the UN General Assembly adopted the United Nations Convention against Corruption (UNCAC) and urged all States and competent regional economic integration organizations to sign and ratify the Convention as soon as possible in order to ensure its rapid entry into force.
The United Nations Development Programme(UNDP) and the United Nations Office on Drugs and Crime (UNODC) are at the forefront of these efforts. According to the United Nations, the cost of corruption adds approximately 10% to the cost of doing business globally. Operating globally and calling ports around the world, we acknowledge that corruption is an obstacle to fair competition and sustainable development in developing as well as industrialized countries.
This day provides an opportunity for political leaders, governments, legal bodies, and lobby groups to join forces against corruption. On this day anti-corruption advocates will engage the general public to effectively fight against corruption and fraud in communities.
The United Nations Office on Drugs and Crime (UNODC) reminds us that, “Corruption thrives in times of crisis and the ongoing global pandemic has not been an exception either. During the Covid-19 health crisis, fighting corruption can mean the difference between life and death; adequate food or hunger; having a roof over one’s head or becoming homeless.”
The Prevention of Corruption Act
Corruption generally comprises illegal activities, which are deliberately hidden and only come to light through scandals, investigations, or prosecutions. The Prevention of Corruption Act (the “PCA”) is the primary Indian law that addresses corruption in government agencies and public sector businesses in India.
The Prevention of Corruption Act, 1988 (No. 49 of 1988) is an Act of the Parliament of India enacted to combat corruption in government agencies and public sector businesses in India. The act was changed as a new bill called Prevention of Corruption (Amendment) Bill 2018 on July 24 was passed. The bill seeks to bring the Indian anti-corruption legal framework in conformity with current international practices laid down by the United Nations Convention Against Corruption (UNCAC).
These amendments to India’s PCA have raised the stakes for companies, including multinational corporations, that operate in India, in relation to corrupt activity by their corporate officers, employees, or even third parties that they work or contract with. This will help in improving the boost business environment scenario in India as well as expedite the decision-making process in the government.
How the day is observed
On International Anti-Corruption Day, people are made aware of the ways to deal with corruption by the groups and organizations fighting corruption. Many personalities, including politicians, notable writers, journalists, and private organization members, come together to support the cause.
This day aims to make a corruption-free society. People organize various seminars, campaigns, and programs to provide knowledge to the public regarding corruption. Social media nowadays play a vital role in spreading messages and encouraging people to fight against corruption.
“On this International Anti-Corruption Day, it would be good for everyone to pause and reflect on the devastating effects of corruption, and to ponder further measures to enhance the fight against that malady.
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