NATO’s Resolute Support (RS) mission in Afghanistan launched an anti-corruption symposium in Herat province on Friday. At the ceremony, the Afghan and foreign officials called on the international community to support the Afghan government in its campaign against the endemic corruption in public offices.
Resolute Support commander said at the event that “they have continued to move forward along the path that today they have launched the symposium to achieve their common goals”.
Addressing the ceremony, Herat governor said that no doubt, the Resolute Support forces support Afghan soldiers in the counterterrorism efforts and that Afghanistan also need to learn anti-corruption approaches, as according to him fighting corruption was difficult than combating terrorism.
Meanwhile, officials from a number of judicial institutions of Herat insisted on strong cooperation between judicial institutions and security forces.
Corruption has been one of the main issues that have influenced Afghanistan to a great extent – it has not only created many other social issues but has also hindered the way to development and progress. Without uprooting corruption from the country, it is really difficult for Afghanistan to pave the way for peace, tranquility and progress.
The national unity government upon its inauguration has taken many bold steps in fight against corruption, including opening of the Kabul Bank scandal.
The government has also established a judicial and justice center for anti-corruption and has punished as well as sentenced many senior officials over corruption issues. But the country still lacks many effective tools used in other countries in order to combat corruption, including monitoring and supervision of adherence to the law and regulations, protection of whistle-blowers and anti-bribery rules.
The international community can help the government to identify missing policies and take steps to establish them. The anti-money laundering law and anti-terrorism law need to be properly implemented to prevent illegal financial activities, including those that fund militant groups.
Meanwhile the High Council on Rule of Law has approved the ‘National Anti-corruption Strategy’ during a meeting chaired by President Ashraf Ghani on last week of September. The government said that justice and judicial organs, civil society groups and international partners had been consulted on the strategy in meetings with them and some of their views had been incorporated.
The president said the people of Afghanistan and international partners were demanding practical steps from Kabul against administrative corruption.He said every department should have their anti-corruption plans and the relevant law needed review and amendment to be more effective.The president promised increasing oversight role for civil society and media in the anti-corruption campaign and asked the civil society to come up with their proposals.
Indeed corruption in general has hampered successes of the missions of the Afghan security forces in their fight against insurgents and allowing the Taliban and other insurgents to draw strength on the battlefields.
As promised by the national unity government leaders, the matter of corruption must be taken seriously in public sectors both by the people and the government. The government also needs to show a strong political will in fighting corruption through implementation of the anti-corruption strategy and treat perpetrators without any discrimination.