Urgent call for greater enforcement of anti-corruption laws and citizen mobilization
The enforcement of anti-corruption laws and the role of civil society in ensuring their effectiveness was stressed at the closing session of the 14th International Anti-Corruption Conference, which called for the G20 to uphold its pledge to tackle corruption.
The 14th Annual International Anti-Corruption Conference (IACC) brought together more than 1200 representatives from the public, private and non-profit sectors from more than 135 countries.
With the theme Restoring trust: global action for transparency, the conference explored five areas: peace and security, natural resources and energy markets, climate governance, accountability in the corporate world and restoring trust in institution. The more than 50 sessions looked for new ways to increase pressure on both the public and private sector to act against corruption.
“After four days of vigorous debate and the exchange of ideas among people intent on stamping out corruption around the globe, we have committed to work hard to ensure that the anti-corruption agenda includes restoring trust in institutions and is mainstreamed into all walks of government and business,” said the Hon. Justice Barry O’Keefe, chair of the International Anti-Corruption Council (IACC). “We have confirmed that this requires innovation, persistence, and above all mobilisation of people and we hope the energy generated at this conference will provide fresh enthusiasm and will spur our work as delegates return to their home countries.”
“The IACC has always been a much-anticipated global conference and we are proud to have hosted it in Thailand. It is a meaningful gathering where we learn from each other best practices and how to face new challenges on how to prevent corruption,” said Professor Pakdee Pothisiri, commissioner of the Thai National Anti-Corruption Commission.
The conference was officially opened by Her Royal Highness Princess Soamsavali and attended by Thai Prime Minister Abhisit Vejjajiva and featured prominent speakers including Sri Mulyani Indrawati, managing director, World Bank, Haruhiko Kuroda, president, Asian Development Bank, Salil Shetty, secretary general, Amnesty International, Ashok Khosla, president of the International Union for Conservation of Nature, Patrick Alley, founder and director of Global Witness, Richard Boucher, deputy secretary geneneral, OECD and Paul Collier, Professor of Economics at Oxford University and author of The Bottom Billion.
The message is clear: laws are not enough. The anti-corruption community must work to push governments to turn words into actions by enforcing anti-corruption laws in all areas, and mobilise ordinary people, in particular the young, to demand that action.
The IACC, first held in 1983, has evolved into the leading global forum on governance and anti-corruption. The conference fosters cooperation and innovation in developing tools to tackle corruption to help end the vicious cycle of poverty that traps millions of people and threatens sustainable development. The !4th IACC was organized by the IACC Council in cooperation with Transparency International, Transparency Thailand and was generously hosted by the Government of Thailand and the National Anti-Corruption Commission of Thailand.