World Unites Against Corruption
01 December 2003

In October the United Nations reached agreement on a groundbreaking Convention Against Corruption. 9 December has been proposed as a new annual International Anti-Corruption Day.

In October the United Nations reached agreement on a groundbreaking Convention Against Corruption. A signing ceremony takes place on 9 December in Mexico, whose President, Vincente Fox, is a leading supporter of Transparency International (TI), the global anti-corruption coalition. The date has been proposed as a new annual International Anti-Corruption Day.

Peter Eigen, TI’s founder, describes the ‘milestone’ convention as ‘a major instrument to use to push governments to live up to new international standards of integrity and good governance’.

Eigen, a former World Bank official in Kenya, founded TI 10 years ago. His most satisfying moment of the last 10 years, he says, was to return to Kenya last July and, standing next to President Mwai Kibaki, address 400 people in Nairobi, six months after the elections that ousted President Arap Moi’s corrupt regime.

In the run-up to the election a grassroots Clean Election campaign helped in a public revolt against repression and corruption. Now Kenya is cleaning out the Augean stables, including sacking 35 public procurement officials for awarding themselves building contracts, and dismissing the head of a corrupt judiciary. According to an opinion poll commissioned by TI in Kenya, 80 per cent of Kenyans think their government is committed to eradicating corruption.



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