Since its launch in April, the website of the Global Judicial Integrity Network has been welcoming a growing number of interested visitors who, as professionals in the judicial field, are entitled to become participants in this exclusive Network to enjoy additional benefits.
The website is a hub for all information related to the Network, taking on board the recommendations from seven preparatory meetings and feedback from a substantive online survey, taken by over 1,000 judges and judicial professionals. Its design ensures visitors have easy access to different sections, such as news stories about interesting and relevant events and activities, and an opinion section where judges can write and provide different views on pertinent issues related to judicial integrity and the activities of the Network.
Two years after it was launched and half-way into its projected life span, the Global Programme for the Implementation of the Doha Declaration has already scored successes in several fields of activity and benefited people in numerous countries around the world. With far-reaching initiatives having already been launched to great acclaim, the Global Programme has covered a variety of disciplines and established thematic components falling under UNODC's mandate.
Today, over 14,000 stakeholders in more than 180 countries have been directly reached by the Global Programme. 23 countries have received direct, targeted technical assistance and over 5,400 stakeholders from 167 countries have been assisted in capacity building.
After two years of planning, seven regional preparatory meetings, and consultations with approximately 4,000 judges, UNODC launched its Global Judicial Integrity Network this week, in the presence of Chief Justices, senior judges and judicial professionals from around the world.
The Network is a platform for judges to share good practices and lessons learned, to support each other, and to join forces in developing new tools and guidelines for strengthening integrity and preventing corruption in the judicial system. As such, it will also provide access to a large online database featuring thousands of resources, good practices, and other judicial documents for immediate reference.
When judges in every country are able to access pertinent legal and judicial resources, to study good practices and to review a multitude of other materials put at their disposition by UNODC, within a network affording them the opportunity to directly liaise and confer with their peers in other jurisdictions, their individual efforts in fighting corruption and in protecting judicial integrity are immediately reinforced by the power of consensus and sustained by the strength of its universality.
Ultimately, and more importantly, these steps will protect people's right to justice. As inspirational and idealistic as it may seem, this is the goal of every honourable member of the judicial system.
In 2016, the United Nations Office on Drugs and Crime launched a global programme to promote a culture of lawfulness. It includes the creation of a Global Judicial Integrity Network to share best practices and lessons learned on the fundamental challenges and new questions relating to judicial integrity and the prevention of corruption.
This is an important step for the creation of a common language and a common perspective amongst different domains of the United Nations. In my capacity as Special Rapporteur, I have already expressed my full disposal to collaborate in the implementation of this programme.