Wednesday, December 11, 2018: The Liberia Anti-Corruption Commission (LACC) in collaboration with USAID and UNDP on Monday, December 10, 2018 ended programs in celebration of International Anti-Corruption Day (IACD). This year’s celebration which took place in Buchanan, Grand Bassa County was held from December 7-10, 2018 with series of activities befitting the occasion.
Delivering the keynote address at this year’s IACD Day in Buchanan, Deputy Education Minister for Administration, Latim Da-Thong who represented the Liberian leader urged Liberians to evaluate the real effect of corruption and what it does to society. He said corruption is an immoral and unethical menace that has the propensity of destroying any civilized society, adding that it does only refer to money, but our behaviors, characters and moral attitude.
The Deputy Minister told the gathering that when a Liberian participate in corruption, he or she benefits themselves but cheat our children, grandchildren and generation to come. He said, those that steal public funds must be made to understand that, their actions slow down the growth of the very nation they steal from, makes it impossible to improve schools, hospitals, roads and other necessities require for society to move forward. He said, those of us holding public officials accountable should note this” whoever fights a monster, should see to it the process for fighting do not become a monster”. We should start with ourselves first as Liberians so that the job can be done with clarity and sincerity to maintain high walls and ethical standards.
Also speaking at the occasion, CENTAL’s Executive Director, Anderson D. Miamen said seeking to abolish tenure positions at key public integrity institutions will undermine the effectiveness and independence of these institutions and make their heads and key managers vulnerable to political manipulations. He urged government to be sincere and truly committed to fight against corruption by being practical and removing the culture of impunity that will serve as a deterrent to current and would-be corrupt officials and individuals.
In addition, the Swedish Ambassador, H.E. Ingrid Wetterqvist also said, corruption has many faces and fuels poverty and inequality. Ambassador Wetterqvist said greed is another driver that leads people in positions of power, who have many things still want to have even more at the detriment of rules and regulations. Corruption feeds on culture of impunity, lack of political will, limited citizens’ participation in demanding accountability and transparency from policy makers. But there can be a change and is all about changing mindsets.
Making remarks at the program, the Executive Chairperson of the LACC, Cllr. James N. Verdier, jr. admonished students to ‘say no to corruption’ which he noted can go a long way in the fight against corruption. The LACC boss stressed the need for more awareness programs along with prosecution which he pointed out would help greatly to reduce corruption.
The theme for the 2018 International Anti-Corruption Day Celebration was “Say No to Corruption, Every No Counts” and slogan, “United Against Corruption”. This year’s program was sponsored by UNDP and USAID
Denna A. Gibson
Public Relations Assistant