16 November 2021 – Cairo, Egypt
“Youth is the most affected category by the impacts of corruption, with 2 billion young men and women around the world aspiring to achieve their dreams in a world that is predominated by justice and integrity” Ghada Waly, UNODC Executive Director
Involving young people in the fight against corruption is crucial for multiple reasons. Their importance in the fight against corruption derives from the fact that they make up a considerable proportion of the general population. young people’s willingness to voice their opinions against corruption derives from their belief in change. This willingness is accompanied by their ability to act and fueled by their energy. Subsequently, their efforts and initiatives against corruption are being increasingly recognized around the world.
With this view, the Administrative Control Authority (ACA) collaborated with UNODC, Cairo University and the United States Agency for International Development (USAID) to organize a Model Conference of the States Parties (CoSP) of the United Nations Convention Against Corruption (UNCAC) for youth to increase their awareness of the Convention, its relevant procedures and the role of Member States to counter and prevent corruption.
The COSP is the main policymaking body of the UNCAC. It supports States parties and signatories in their implementation of the Convention and gives policy guidance to UNODC to develop and implement anti-corruption activities. The COSP provides a chance for the Member States to discuss methods of countering and preventing corruption, hold an interactive international dialogue on issues that impact people’s lives, share common challenges and best practices, and agree on dynamic solutions to the threats posed by corruption. The Conference meets every two years and adopts resolutions and decisions in furtherance of its mandate.
The day of the Model came after months of preparations in which the students showcased remarkable research skills concerning each country they represented and its relevant policies as well as the new mechanisms and platforms established to prevent corruption. Each of the students provided a statement on behalf of the Member State they embodied calling for action to utilize the Conference for effective policymaking. The Model provided a space for the students to be creative on the necessary policies in alignment with each country’s background, context, and legislation.
From his side, Major General Hassan Abdul Shafi, Chairman of the Administrative Control Authority expressed his happiness with the efforts exerted by the students in conducting a successful simulation and praised their research, public speaking, teamwork and writing skills. “I am very glad of the collaboration with Cairo University, UNODC and USAID to provide such youth with the expertise and knowledge of the international instrument against corruption, the UNCAC,” he added.
The activity paves the way to the International Anti-Corruption Day, marked annually on the 9th of December, and to Egypt hosting the Ninth session of the CoSP to the UNCAC in December 2021 in Sharm El Sheikh.
Improved policy coherence and increased partnerships are key to achieving the 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development. Noting the chance for collaboration and policy development that the COSP for the UNCAC provides, the Conference will support the achievement of Sustainable Development Goals (SDG) 16 “Promote peaceful inclusive societies for sustainable development, provide access to justice for all and build effective, accountable and inclusive institutions at all levels” and 17 “Strengthen the means of implementation and revitalize the global partnership for sustainable development.”
Youth who took part in the Model are examples of tomorrow’s public officials, policymakers and business leaders. For this reason, including them in anti-corruption efforts is an investment, and involving them in the fight against corruption can ensure a solid future of anti-corruption policies and practices.
UNODC’s intervention was in the framework of a project funded by the Siemens Integrity Initiative that aims at supporting a culture of integrity. The Global Action for Business Integrity project aims to prevent and fight corruption by strengthening legal frameworks, helping small businesses identify corruption risks, and involving youth, civil society, and academia in developing anti-corruption responses.
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