Fighting corruption is not only the responsibility of Government and the Anti-Corruption Commission (ACC), but it requires collective actions by all to ensure that those who commit crimes are brought to justice, Prime Minister Saara Kuugongelwa-Amadhila said.
The theme of the conference held here last week as “Building an Honest Namibia Together: People, Integrity and Action”.
She said both those in government and those outside who sometimes offer incentives which induce government operatives to succumb to temptations, act corruptly.
Kuugongelwa-Amadhila said it also should include other forms of corruption, such as tax evasions and the avoidance of illicit flows of funds, which rob developing nations of much-needed resources to eradicate poverty.
“Collective action is needed since corruption enriches the few, but weakens the social fabric, the economy and the State. Where corruption is rampant, it becomes a key obstacle to development”, she noted.
She added that corruption undermines the rule of law and democracy, leads to the wasting of public funds and distorts markets and competition.
Corruption furthermore hampers trade and inhibits investments.
The Prime Minister said Namibia needs a culture of integrity in all sectors of society to achieve sustained, positive change, and there is thus a need for people with integrity to take action together.
Kuugongelwa-Amadhila said good governance has characteristics such as political pluralism so that transparency and accountability can really work on the basis of a system of checks and balances; and also a social coalition, where government and the non-state actors can shape and share a vision for socio-economic development.
A policy-learning approach to allow policy debates where role-players can learn from reform failures, analyse causes for weak policy outcomes and examine how to deal with emerging policy challenges in future, is likewise needed.
The Prime Minister said effective political leadership is also one of the characteristics of good governance in the sense that leaders should be deeply committed to economic development and reform.
Kuugongelwa-Amadhila said there cannot be good governance without a functioning system of public administration.
She said they are aware that good governance is integral to economic growth, the eradication of poverty and hunger as well as sustainable development.
“I would like to mention that the Government has decided to make asset disclosure by public office-bearers and civil servants mandatory,” she said.
The conference was attended by international officials from the United Nations Development Programme, the United Nations Office on Drugs and Crime, the African Development Bank and the South African Forum against Corruption last week.