Special Feature: International Anti Corruption Day 2018

"United Against Corruption": South Asian governments call for stronger cooperation to promote good governance


New Delhi/December 09, 2018: Joining hands with UNODC South Asia on the International Anti Corruption Day, South Asian Member States emphasised their unwavering commitment to promote good governance and transparency, and called for stronger regional cooperation to eliminate corrupt practices.

Through this special feature, "Voices against Corruption", we bring to you their special and insightful reflections on the issue.


Bangladesh: Leading a National Movement against Corruption



Dr. Iqbal Mahmood  


Anti Corruption Commission

Government of Bangladesh


"It is really a wonderful opportunity to convey my message on the occasion of International Anti-Corruption Day, 2018. The Anti-Corruption Commission (ACC), Bangladesh, is an independent entity established under the ACC Act, 2004. In a bid to attain its avowed goals and objectives, the ACC has so far made many a remarkable achievements. Publicly the most acclaimed ones include, but are not restricted to, the ACC Complaint Center that has been set to keep open 24x7 toll-free hotline, 106, since July 2017 to register complaints and information from any person/whistleblower related to any act of corruption. Till November 30, 2018, a total of 19,44,220 calls were made on this hotline.

In addition, regular and rigorous monitoring of the prosecuting process has significantly boosted the rate of convictions (37% in 2013 to 68% in 2018) awarded to the corrupt offenders by trial courts. As an inclusive approach, the Commission has got to integrate representatives from the Government, Non Governmental Organisations (NGOs) and civil society etc. and venture on countrywide social movements against corruption. As of now, 25,317 Integrity Units and 3,715 Corruption Prevention Committees at the level of districts, cities, upazilas and unions have already been formed. Nearly 1,544 Honesty Stores have also been established in secondary high schools across the country.

As a national anti-graft institution, the ACC strives to dedicate the entirety of its wide range of actions towards building up a society in Bangladesh that is free at from all forms of corruption. I gratefully thank UNODC and fervently wish the very success of the International Anti Corruption Day 2018 across the world."


Bhutan: Enhancing Transparency for Sustainable Development



Ms. Kinley Yangzom


Anti Corruption Commission

Government of Bhutan


"Corruption is a serious challenge worldwide and the issue has evolved over the years from being a moral issue to development impediment. Despite efforts to control corruption worldwide, analysis of the Transparency International's Corruption Perceptions Index 2017 indicate that only one-third of the countries are doing relatively well in preventing corruption. If corruption is left unchecked, it will impede realization of 2030 agenda for Sustainable Development.

Further, with rapid change in the global socio-economic and political dimensions, fighting corruption is going to get increasingly difficult, especially for small developing countries of which almost 50% are in South Asia. Therefore, it is critical to redouble our united efforts in firmly acting against corruption and embracing the principles of integrity, transparency, accountability and good governance.

In marking the International Anti-Corruption Day (IACD) 2018 on the theme "United Against Corruption", let us come together and think, speak and act as one united People in our collective fight against corruption.

Say No to Corruption!"


India: Adopting Zero Tolerance to Corrupt Practices



Mr. Suresh Prabhu  

Honourable Union Minister of Commerce and Industry

Ministry of Commerce and Industry

Government of India


"First things first! My compliments to UNODC South Asia for bringing out this special e-feature to mark the International Anti-Corruption Day today.

Corruption strangles people, communities and nations. It breaches fundamental human rights, exacerbates poverty, weakens education and health, undermines electoral processes and reinforces injustices by distorting the rule of law. Ever since our Government led by our Prime Minister Shri Narendra Modi took charge, we have made concerted efforts to de-institutionalize corruption.

Right from making India to leap 23 ranks in the World Bank's Ease of Doing Business rankings to be ranked at 77 (India has an upward move of 53 ranks in the last two years which is highest improvement by any large country since 2011), our Government made many systemic changes to improve the situation. The Amendment of Benami Transactions Act, 1988; Amendment of Securities Law Act, 2016; Amendment of Prevention of Money Laundering Act, 2002; Amendment of The Insolvency and Bankruptcy Code, 2016; Amendment of The Mines and Minerals (Development and Regulation) 2015; The Real Estate Regulation Act, 2016; The Undisclosed Foreign and Income and Assets Bill, 2015; Demonetisation, Introduction of GST etc. are some of the measures to systematically plug a lot of loopholes that people exploit to indulge in corrupt practices.

On this International Anti-Corruption Day, I invite all countries, inter-governmental organizations, and civil society to take a collective stand against this complex social, political and economic disease that affects all countries. We must end corruption now to achieve an equitable, inclusive and more prosperous future for all." 


Maldives: Promoting Good Governance for a Prosperous Future



Mr. Hassan Luthfee  


Anti Corruption Commission

Republic of Maldives


"Corruption is not immune to any single country or a person. Corruption is 'carcinomic' in nature. It is a malicious crime that threatens the social norms of peace, rights and justice. Corruption cannot be fixed intermittently. It cannot be sustainably solved without uprooting the infected stems and roots. To overcome the risks of corruption, high integrity leaderships that commit to 'clean public governance' is a key essence to righteously uphold rule of law and serve justice. It is critical to progressive advancement of nations and regional developments. Leaderships must clearly articulate actions that match their words and wisdom of trustworthiness that supports efficient and effective service delivery to the public.

A good governance system must apply a holistic approach of the public and private sector machinery that must not shadow ambiguities in anti-corruption laws, regulations, procedural mechanisms and practices. A good governance system elevates a nation's public confidence and trust in its government inclusive of the international standpoints such as the implementation of the UN Convention against Corruption and the UN SDG Goal 16 on Peace, Justice and Strong Institutions. Verily, it is heartening to observe that the Maldives is striding for governance transformations with the newly elected government. Success of a good governance system to counter corruption can be reached through collective efforts in ways of design, development and delivery by stakeholders involved to drive the anti-corruption machinery to achieve shared prosperities.

I stand in cordial solidarity, and express my deepest felicitations to all those citizens across borders who are active and silently engaged in the moral cause to consistently combat corruption. As global citizens to counter corruption, we all must, in action steadfast with 'zero tolerance to corruption'."


Nepal: Supporting Regional Cooperation to End Corruption



Mr. Navin Kumar Ghimire

Chief Commissioner

Commission For The Investigation Of Abuse Of Authority (CIAA)

Government of Nepal


"It gives me immense pleasure to know that the UNODC Regional Office for South Asia is observing the International Anti-Corruption Day with a commendable initiative to promote integrity in the region through its special e-feature 'South Asian Voices against Corruption.'

Corruption is one of the major bottlenecks in delivering the prosperity, security and justice that the South Asian region has promised its people. It has been the prime factor behind the slow economic progress of this socio-culturally and economically vibrant region. Furthermore, corruption has grown in its scope to organized crimes and financing of terrorism, transcending the national and geographical boundaries. Regional cooperation among the anti-graft bodies and law enforcement agencies is, therefore, an imperative.

Nepal, realizing the challenges that corruption poses to its development, has established CIAA with constitutionally vested powers. CIAA is striving hard to establish good governance and rule of law through its three-pronged strategic approach, namely Punitive, Preventive and Promotional, stressing on enforcement of anti-corruption laws, enactment of preventive programs and enrichment of public awareness against corruption respectively. With these measures, I firmly believe, though it is difficult, corruption control is possible, sooner than later, through concerted efforts of all stakeholders.

As the anti-graft body of the country, CIAA is firm on its commitment for regional cooperation in combating corruption. To that end, I believe that UNODC can play a vital role in building important platforms for regional cooperation. I extend my best wishes for the success of entire endeavour to enhance integrity and governance systems in the region."


(As told to  Mr. Samarth Pathak  , Communications Officer, UNODC South Asia in exclusive interactions.)