07 Aug 2013 09:00
WINDHOEK, 07 AUG (NAMPA) - The Director of the Anti-Corruption Commission (ACC), Paulus Noa says fighting corruption requires persistence from the countrys political leadership.
That is what is termed political will. Political commitment to fight corruption does not imply exclusive commitment from the Executive. It is a commitment that is demonstrated from the Executive to equally other organs of the State, he said on the first day of the two-day national accountability institutions conference.
The conference, which was held under the theme 'Working towards Coordinated Strategies in Strengthening the Accountability Process in Namibia', started in the capital on Tuesday.
It was aimed at discussing topics such as Parliament and accountability; the legislative link between the Auditor-General and other accountability institutions; the role of civil society in the accountability process; and ethics and accountability, amongst other things.
Noa said corruption has negative effects on citizens, whose Members of Parliament represent them in Parliament, adding that it therefore cannot ignore the fight against corruption or leave it to other oversight institutions only.
Corruption destroys good governance, peace and public order, and reduces revenue-collection through money-laundering and tax evasion, he stated adding that corruption also drives away investment opportunities, and in the process exacerbates poverty and inequality.
It also erodes democracy and the rule of law, which are the hallmarks of democracy.
It furthermore results in the mismanagement of public projects, ignorance about sound national policies, moral decay and in the end, those occupying public positions no longer uphold ethical values.
While in the end the entire citizenry becomes the victims of corruption, the worst and immediate victims of corruption are the already impoverished members of society.
It should not be ignored that corruption can cause anarchy and public disorder when the livelihoods of citizens do not improve on account of corruption, Noa stressed.
He said citizens (the electorate) have used their power of ballot to elect their representatives whom they trust to serve their interest. Thus, parliamentarians have a role to impeccably demonstrate that it raises awareness, and remain vigilant to ensure that corruption does not spread its tentacles.
Over 50 African parliamentarians from various countries are attending the conference, which ends on Wednesday.
The conference was organised by the Namibian Parliament, in conjunction with the African Development Fund and the African Development Bank.