This month marked a period of promising engagement with Judicial Associations from over ten African countries and mutual agreement around the priority needs of Mozambique to strengthen its judicial integrity framework.
As part of ongoing work under the Doha Declaration Global Programme, UNODC attended the annual meeting of the Africa group of the International Association of Judges (IAJ) in Maputo where the theme of judicial independence was discussed, as well met key Mozambican judicial figures to discuss strengthening the country's integrity framework.
Developing a global brand of prison products moved a step closer to being realized this week with the bringing together of key prison administrators from across Latin America. Part of the Doha Declaration Global Programme, the event was organized to explore new and innovative approaches within the Latin American region which are being used to mitigate the social, economic and personal challenges faced by prisoners and reduce the risk of recidivism through rehabilitation. By identifying programmes which support prisoner's ability to lead self-sustained lives, the aim is to support the wider ideal of promoting a culture of lawfulness.
As part of its Education for Justice (E4J) initiative, UNODC is seeking to promote values among primary-level school children and in this context held a workshop in May at the Carmen Sole Bosch school on the outskirts of Panama City. Over 230 children from pre-kindergarten to second grade took part in the one-day workshop during which integrity, honesty and ethics was taught at this early - and highly formative - age.
Run by UNODC Panama, and supported by E4J, the workshop revolved around the character duo Dogui (a dog) and Dengoso (a mosquito), two characters that were created by UNODC's Panama Office. The former represents the positive: Dogui goes to school, cares about others and advocates the values which are key to a safer and more just world; Dengoso, on the other hand, is an antagonist and a negative influence: constantly trying to persuade Dogui to follow the less honest path by lying and cheating.
With the aim of developing innovative solutions to address corruption, youth representatives and students from some 13 Pacific Island countries and territories gathered this past week for the Pacific Youth Anti-Corruption Innovation Lab held in Nadi, Fiji. Held over three days, the event also considered how education can best be used as a tool to foster the culture of integrity and lawfulness and ultimately counter corruption.
"The idea of the Anti-Corruption Innovation Lab is to provide a platform for young leaders from the region to get together and brainstorm creative approaches to increase youth involvement in the area of anti-corruption, thereby contributing to the achievement of Sustainable Development Goal 16 targets in the Pacific", noted UNODC's Regional Anti-Corruption Adviser, Maria Adomeit.
UNODC began its Global Programme on Cybercrime in 2013, following Resolution 22/8 of the Commission on Crime Prevention and Criminal Justice. Focussing upon building the capabilities of those in the global South, the work is varied: in some instances, this means developing a legislative framework; in others, the focus is on building the capabilities of law enforcement officers to investigate cyber-dependent offences.
Law enforcement cannot, however, end cybercrime through arrests and prosecutions. Prevention is truly the key. The Education for Justice (E4J) initiative provides a unique opportunity to address a significant threat in a different way: by educating children and young adults to become conscious of cyber-risk and ultimately to make better decisions.