Ghana is said to be loosing $3billion USD equivalent to GHS 13.5billion every year through corruption acts.
Disclosing this in Accra, the Ghana Integrity Initiative (GII) is of the view that, a more strategic and sustainable response to the fight against corruption lies in the effective application of the traditional approaches complimented with other non-traditional approaches such as an integrity awards scheme that honors public officials who have demonstrated integrity in their work and in society.
The Ghana Integrity Awards seeks to honor the efforts of outstanding individuals and institutions making significant contributions towards the fight against corruption in Ghana.
Speaking at the official launch of the maiden Ghana Integrity Awards 2019 in Accra, the Executive Director of the anti-corruption insitution, Mrs. Linda Ofori-Kwafo indicated that, GII as a non-partisan, non-profit civil empowerment organization is with a mission to fight corruption and promote good governance in the daily lives of people and institutions through public education , research and advocacy that ensures integrity, tansparency and accountability from duty bearers and citizens.
Explaining the purpose of the award, she pointed out that, the fight against corruption has been long fought with traditional approaches such as prevention, investigations among other methods has however chalked limited success in our context though seemingly successful in other jurisdictions.
Therefore believing that, one key strength of awards as an anti-corruption tool is that, people who wins such awards tend to abide by the views held by the giver and the general public; hence, an Integrity Award winner(s) will continue to portray exemplary behavior for others to emulate: though the positive effect of an award scheme may not be immediate, it grains momentum where others desire to also win such award hence work hard with the integridents of fighting corruption.
Also stated that, the purpose of the award is to recognize the efforts of outstanding public institutions and individuals making significant contribution to the fight against corruption in Ghana.
“Specifically, the Ghana Integrity (GI) Awards seeks to honour public institutions and individuals that have undertaken an outstanding projects or initiatives which has had significant impact in the fight against corruption and has benefitted the Ghanaian society at large” Mrs. Ofori-Kwafo indicated.
Adding “The Ghana Integrity Awards complements other incentive driven approaches (awards) that recognizes and highlights institutions and individuals who uphold and project high standards of integrity, transparency and accountability in their operations”.
The Awards would be presented in five categories listed below: Policy & Administrative Reforms;
Transparency & Social accountability
;Efficient Public Service Delivery; Effective Enforcement Category; Integrity Personality of the Year.
On his part, Tove Degnbol, Ambassador of Denmark said the recognition of institutions and individuals who demonstrate integrity, transparency, and accountability in their work is a positive way of creating incentives to combat corruption.
Therefore, Transparency is crucial for moving the anti-corruption agenda, usually, when issues such as integrity are being discussed, the focus is on lack of integrity, the negative impact of corruption, and the frustration about the lack of actions when people are found guilty in corruption.
Mr. Richard Quayson, Deputy Commissioner for the Commission of Human Rights and Administrative Justice (CHRAJ) and the Chairman for the programme, noted that the GI award should challenge and stimulate the world to have integrity at all times.
Story By: Delali Gavor