Corruption: actions

Partnership with the Brazilian Office of the Comptroller General

One of UNODC's strategical lines of action in Brazil is to support the federal government in the implementation of preventive measures in the fight against corruption. The main agency in liaison with UNODC in this field is the Brazilian Office of the Comptroller General (CGU), a Brazilian governmental agency within the Presidency of the Republic responsible for preventing and fighting corruption, with roles of internal control and promotion of transparency in public affairs.

The partnership between UNODC and CGU initiated in 2005, with the IV Global Forum on Fighting Corruption, in Brasilia. With the motto "From Words to Deeds", the Forum focused on five main subjects: international conventions, money laundering, public procurement & electronic government, measuring corruption and conflict of interests. Governmental representatives, members of international organisms and non-governmental organizations from 103 countries gathered for five days to discuss subjects on fighting corruption. The first concrete result accomplished after the Forum was the ratification, by the Brazilian National Congress, of the United Nations Convention against Corruption, which happened on the 15th of June 2005.

After the IV Global Forum on Fighting Corruption, the partnership developed activities for the qualification of the Brazilian Office of the Comptroller General in modern auditing and investigation techniques, improvement of the National System of Integrity and planning of a national anti-corruption strategy.

UNODC supported the creation of the Virtual Library on Corruption (in Portuguese), a repository of data on the subject hosted at the CGU's website, offering to the general public an instrument of information and research on documents issued by international organisms, scientific production, research results, as well as links to other websites on the subject.

Imagem: CGUUNODC supported the implementation of the "Keeping an Eye on Public Money" (" Olho Vivo no Dinheiro Público", in Portuguese) Programme, a CGU initiative to mobilize civil society against corruption, promoting more transparency and social control over governmental actions. The programme includes training of municipal public agents, mainly those that participate in the planning and execution of budgets that include federal funds. It also comprises training to the civil society, including members of city councils, community leaders and citizens in general. The programme's aim is to demonstrate how federal funds received by the municipalities must be used and how citizens can check the use of such funds.

Through this project, UNODC supported the CGU's effort to extend its field of action to the municipal sphere and promoted even further the access to the Transparency Portal (in Portuguese), a Brazilian government initiative that received international awards and by which all federal expenditures and funds made available to municipalities across the country are publicized. For its innovative character and positive impact on society, UNODC headquarters awarded the Transparency Portal as one of the five best initiatives in the world related to corruption prevention.

Also in the area of corruption prevention, UNODC supported the creation of the CGU's "Little Portal" (" Portalzinho da CGU", in Portuguese), targeting children with the objective of increasing the future generations' awareness on the subject. The web portal seeks to spread a feeling of citizenship among children, showing the importance of refusing to participate in any sort of reproachable behavior. Also directed to the children, UNODC annually promotes with CGU the Day of the Child Citizen, in which hundreds of students from public and private schools spend a day unlike their routine, taking part in various activities that stimulate citizenship.

CGU, with the support of UNODC, developed a project with the Mauricio de Sousa Institute, an organization named after the famous comic book author and creator of the Monica's Gang (Turma da Mônica). The institute developed a series of informative materials targeting children, intended to increase children's awareness on the corruption subject. The initiative reached over eighteen thousand students of sixty Brazilian public schools, complementing the strategy of civil society mobilization with focus on children.

Partnerships with the Judiciary

The United Nations Conventions against Corruption and against Transnational Organized Crime emphasize the importance of the Judiciary's integrity and independence as indispensable conditions for the construction of democracy and the full exercise of the Rule of Law.

Based on this paradigm, UNODC seeks to strengthen its partnership with the judicial branch in the countries where it acts, in order to support them in the implementation of the conventions, the use of international legal tools and the continuous process of perfectioning of their employees according to international good practices.

In 2009, in Brazil, UNODC signed cooperation agreements with the Superior Court of Justice (STJ) and the Federal Justice Council, and with the National Justice Council (CNJ), which enable the development of tools, research, studies, analyses and diagnoses on the Judiciary, in order to improve the performance, the ethics, the independence and the impartiality of Justice, all in accordance with international good practices, norms and standards.

These agreements reinforce previous activities, such as the publishing, in partnership with the Federal Justice Council, of an edition with commentaries on the Bangalore Principles of Judicial Conduct, a reference document used worldwide that provides for a fair and public hearing by an independent and impartial court - principles of general acceptance by the UN Member States.

Partnership with academic institutions and the private sector

UNODC has also concluded agreement letters with a diverse group of academic institutions and civil society organizations for the development of studies on the corruption phenomenon. An example is the agreement signed with the Catholic University of Brasilia (UCB), an institution that develops research on the effectiveness of control organisms as instruments to promote integrity, transparency and efficiency in the execution of public policies by governmental agencies. Another study, produced by the Federal University of Minas Gerais (UFMG), evaluates the perception on corruption on the part of various sectors of the Brazilian political scene - judges, members of the prosecution service, public officials and public policies' managers.

Ethos Institute is one example of a civil society institution that established a partnership with UNODC. An agreement letter was signed with the objective of promoting practices and references of integrity and fight against corruption within the Brazilian private sector, especially in its relationship with the public sector. The agreement provides for the training of small and medium sized businesses on the concepts and practices related to the fight against corruption, using good practices of social responsibility principles multiplication.

One of the actions promoted by this partnership was the publishing of the manual "Companies' Social Responsibility in the Fight Against Corruption" (in Portuguese), which shows how private companies can also contribute to the confrontation with this problem. The manual's text suggests a reflection on the false perception that committing offences may be advantageous, which is based on the creation of apparent short-term advantages to the companies. However, it is demonstrated that corruption in fact distorts competition, establishing unfair competition practices, and deteriorates free market mechanisms, which generates insecurity within the business environment, drives away new investments, makes products and services more expensive and destroys business ethics, removing any possibility of sustainable profits in the long term.

International Anti-corruption Day

UNODC also promotes various events on corruption, the main one being the International Anti-Corruption Day, on the 9th December. In 2009, the event was attended by the President of Brazil, Luiz Inácio Lula da Silva. The keynote speech was presented by Stuart Gilman, international expert in corruption and Deputy Director of the Stolen Assets Recovery Initiative (StAR), a joint initiative of UNODC and the World Bank. The event also included the offering of the awards for two short-film (in Portuguese) and one electronic games competitions (in Portuguese), organized by CGU and UNODC as a different way to attract attention, especially the youth's, for the importance of the fight against corruption.

 

UNODC Award

Since 2008, UNODC awards individuals, institutions and initiatives that have contributed significantly to the fight against and the prevention to corruption. The awards emphasise the idea that mobilization must come from all of society's sectors, from the highest levels of federal administration to the common citizen.

2013 Award

Luiz Navarro - Former Executive Secretary at the Brazilian Office of the Comptroller General, member of the Senior Advisory Board of the International Anti-Corruption Academy and participant in the drafting of the Bill on Liability of Legal Persons for Acts of Corruption.

2012 Award

Márlon Reis - Judge, received the award for his impressive role within the public initiative, which resulted in the 'Clean Sheet Law' and in the application of the law of information access.

2011 Award

Odilon de Oliveira - Brazilian Federal judge, received the award for his work in the fight against corruption and organized crime.

2010 Award

Movement to Combat Electoral Corruption (MCCE), due to the importance of its work in developing the process of presentation and approval of the 'Clean Sheet Law' in Brazil.

Foto: Ricardo Stuckert / PR2009 Awards

Gilson Dipp - National Justice Council (CNJ) Internal Affairs Officer, received the award for CNJ's work towards improving the Brazilian Judiciary's agility and transparency.

Maurício de Sousa - Brazilian comic books author, received the award for his actions in raising corruption awareness among children, through the production of informative materials with the "Monica's Gang" characters.

2008 Awards

Individual effort

  • Dulce Hulf, public server who reported a corruption scheme in the public health system, even though she suffered various threats, including death threats. Through her reports, many servers involved in the scheme have been prosecuted.

Media

  • Época Magazine, received the award for their work in raising public awareness through the first edition of the Época Magazine Debate.
  • Diários Associados, received the award for their work in raising public awareness through newspapers Estado de Minas and Correio Braziliense.
  • Rede Globo Television Network, received the award for their work in raising public awareness through the soap opera "A Favorita". Soap opera director João Emanuel Carneiro and actors Milton Gonçalves and Carmo Dalla Vecchia also received awards for their participation in the soap opera.

Civil Society

  • Contas abertas ('Open accounts'), the NGO received the award for their work in raising public awareness through assisting the media in the monitoring of public expenditures.

Initiatives

  • Transparency Portal, a Brazilian Office of the Comptroller General (CGU)'s initiative, received the award for its important work on raising public awareness through the publishing of all federal government's public expenditures.
  • National coordination of the campaign "What do you have to do with corruption?" received the award for their work in raising public awareness through the campaign.