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Tenth Session of the Conference of the States Parties to the United Nations Convention Against Corruption

Statement by the Director-General, Ms Jan Beagle

Tenth Session of the Conference of the States Parties to the United Nations Convention Against Corruption
Atlanta, 12 December 2023
Mr. President,
Madame Executive Director,

It is a pleasure to address this Conference on behalf of the International Development Law Organization (IDLO), the only global intergovernmental organization exclusively devoted to promoting the rule of law to advance peace and sustainable development.

I would like to congratulate the Presidency and Executive Director Ghada Waly for their leadership on this important issue.

The 20th anniversary of the UNCAC comes at a critical moment.

Corruption, with its inherently corrosive effect on societies, poses a significant challenge to the achievement of the 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development and the commitment to “leave no one behind”.

Its profound negative impact on the rule of law, good governance, and human rights threatens peace and security, undermines trust in public institutions, hampers the provision of public services, and thwarts inclusive economic development.

Corruption’s broad social costs are felt disproportionately by women, youth, and other marginalized groups by increasing inequality and preventing the distribution of resources to intended beneficiaries.

Anti-corruption is a key priority for IDLO.

We are helping to strengthen legal frameworks, make institutions more transparent and responsive, and enhance their capacity to combat all forms of corruption in many countries, including The Bahamas, the Democratic Republic of Congo, Honduras, Indonesia, Kenya, Kyrgyzstan, Moldova, Mongolia, The Philippines, Somalia, and Ukraine.

Drawing on IDLOs experience, allow me to share three reasons why the rule of law is critical in addressing the multidimensional challenges posed by corruption.

First, the rule of law can promote greater transparency, accountability, and integrity in the public sector.

UNCAC recognises the importance of strong, effective and accountable justice institutions.

In Latin America and the Caribbean, for instance, IDLO is implementing a regional programme to strengthen the capacities of anti-corruption institutions to foster transparency, accountability and integrity, based on international and regional good practice.

The rule of law can also enhance the ability of the entire justice chain to prevent, investigate, prosecute, and adjudicate corruption and related offences.

Specialised anti-corruption bodies can provide timely and effective resolution of corruption cases.

In Ukraine, for example, IDLO supported the establishment of the High Anti-Corruption Court, and involved international experts in the judicial selection process.

IDLO has also supported a merit-based selection process for candidates to public offices in Ukraine, including the heads of the Specialized Anti-Corruption Prosecutor’s Office (SAPO) and the Asset Recovery and Management Agency (ARMA).

Second, the rule of law can bolster states’ capacity to prevent corruption and safeguard the independence of justice systems at a time when they are under increasing threat around the world.

IDLO helps partners to develop innovative digital solutions, such as court monitoring tools for electronic case management, that promote efficiency and transparency in the justice sector, while reducing corruption risks.

In Kenya, for example, we supported the implementation of digital systems for electronic filing and payment systems, virtual hearings, court recordings, and transcription services.

Third, the rule of law can increase the justice sector’s ability to detect and prevent illicit financial flows and facilitate asset recovery, which is essential for inclusive economic development.

In Somalia, for instance, IDLO supported the establishment of a Financial Reporting Centre to help prevent money laundering and support the government to investigate and prosecute offenders.

I would like to conclude, by emphasising the importance of partnerships and international cooperation. IDLO is pleased to participate in multiple partnerships, including with UNODC, the G20, OECD and the World Bank, to share best practices and promote coordinated actions.

IDLO is committed to collaborating with all partners, to implement the UNCAC as an essential part of realizing the 2030 Agenda.