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International Anti-Corruption Day – Let’s Stand United Against Corruption

Corruption runs through the veins of India like a deadly virus, and what better way to talk about it than the International Anti-Corruption Day, which is observed today the world over.The global campaign United Against Corruption focuses on corruption as one of the biggest obstacles to achieving the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs).
logo for international anti-corruption day
United Against Corruption is the theme for this day
The United Nations General Assembly on October 31, 2003, adopted the United Nations Convention against Corruption, and designated December 9 International Anti-Corruption Day, in order to raise awareness about corruption and of the role of Convention in fighting and preventing it. This convention came into force in the year 2005, and since then the day is being observed annually.
Corruption affects every country, region and community. No one is immune to this crime. But everyone can take part in the fight against corruption. People often think that they are at the mercy of corruption and that it is just a “way of life”. However, every society, sector and citizen would benefit from getting united against corruption in their everyday life.
Here are some examples of how you can stand united against corruption:

Corporate India

In the private sector, corruption increases the cost of doing business through the added “tax” of bribes, the additional management cost of negotiating with corrupt officials, and the legal and financial penalties of breached agreements or getting caught. Here’s how the management of private companies can be united against corruption:
– Foster economic stability by enforcing zero-tolerance practices towards corruption. A transparent and open business community is a cornerstone of any strong democracy.
– Enact policies covering gifts, supply chain, whistleblowers and other key corruption issues, educate all employees about them. Employees will work better if they feel confident that they are operating in a fair and just environment.
– Fund education programmes and ensure that they are fairly administered.
– Supporting a strong education system through donations and advocacy is a good investment for the future.
– Strictly enforce anti-corruption measures and use independent auditors to ensure compliance. Introduce “anti-corruption strategies” into the social dialogue.
– Adhere to rules on fair competition. Corruption can shield disreputable companies from fair competition, thus allowing inefficient firms to survive and distorting the marketplace.
– Ensure that companies providing healthcare follow international good practices to provide services and supplies that benefit all.
Allowing fake medicines to enter the market for reasons of greed, for example, can endanger a whole society.

Citizens like you and me

Access to basic health care is a right of every citizen. Knowing your rights and asking the right questions are all part of being a responsible citizen. Inform yourself about the rule of law and what the Government has pledged to do to fight corruption. Being part of an informed citizenry is not only vital to a healthy democracy: it holds elected officials responsible for their actions.
– By reporting incidences of corruption to the authorities. By coming forward, you not only stand against the corrupt, you also stand up for your community.
– By teaching children that corruption is unacceptable. Parents can teach their children the value of integrity.
– By refusing to pay or accept bribes, facilitation fees or gifts. Rejecting illicit rewards for work done or to be done sends a strong message not only to those who would attempt to solicit favours, but also to those working with them.
Safeguard development by telling elected officials that fighting corruption should be an integral part of all development policies.
Reminding those you put in office that they represent you, your community and your ideals, at home and abroad, is not only your right, it’s your responsibility.