The Administrative Control and Transparency Authority organised a number of events on the occasion of the International Anti-Corruption Day, which is observed annually on December 9, since the passage of the United Nations Convention Against Corruption in 2003 to raise public awareness for anti-corruption.
Marking the occasion aims to increase awareness and mobilise and unite efforts against corruption which wastes financial and human energies and constitutes a very serious obstacle to development efforts in many countries around the world. The authority was keen on holding seminars, discussion panels and training courses, within the framework of its efforts in combating corruption.
Qatar participated in the second international conference “Integrity, transparency and accountability policies between principle and application” which was organised virtually by the Palestinian Anti-Corruption Commission. Qatar’s efforts in prompting integrity and transparency and combat corruption in the public sector were highlighted during the conference.
Qatar’s delegation to the conference was headed by HE the President of the Administrative Control and Transparency Authority Hamad bin Nasser al-Misned.
Speaking on the occasion, he said the conference strengthens the principle of international cooperation on which the United Nations Convention Against Corruption is built, and constitutes an opportunity to inform the participants from different countries about the international principles and standards related to the policy of integrity, transparency and accountability.
The conference also allows for benefiting from the experiences of the countries participating in the conference on their ability to develop and implement integrity, transparency and accountability policies, in accordance with international standards and principles.
Addressing the opening session of the conference, he stressed the keenness on participating in the event in light of the strong and deep-rooted political and fraternal relations between Qatar and Palestine, and in line with His Highness the Amir Sheikh Tamim bin Hamad al-Thani’s assertion on the support to Palestine in all possible areas.
He said the conference is being held at a time when the whole world has become aware, more than ever before, that fighting corruption is a duty that no country can undertake alone, and that international cooperation in the fields of corruption prevention and promotion of integrity and transparency is imperative.
He underlined that Qatar spares no effort towards achieving the highest indicators of integrity and transparency, not only at the national level, but also at the regional and international levels, and perhaps the most prominent efforts exerted in this regard is the adoption of a charter of conduct and integrity for public officials, holding relevant training programmes and achieving advanced ranks in the Corruption Perceptions Index and the Worldwide Governance Indicators issued by the World Bank.
He added that Qatar encourages individual and institutional efforts to enhance integrity and transparency worldwide through the launch of the Sheikh Tamim Bin Hamad Al-Thani Anti-Corruption Excellence Award, which has been awarded annually on the International Anti-Corruption Day since 2016 for individuals and organisations that actively contribute to combating corruption, in four categories, namely Academic Research and Education, Youth Creativity and Engagement, Innovation and Outstanding Achievement. The honouring ceremony of the fifth edition of the Award was held this year in the Republic of Tunisia.
Hamad bin Nasser al-Misned underlined that the announcement of His Highness the Amir Sheikh Tamim bin Hamad al-Thani to hold the first elections for the Shura Council in October 2021 affirmed that Qatar is taking an important step forward in the path of strengthening the traditions of the Qatari Shura and developing the legislative process with a wider participation of citizens, which is a culmination of the comprehensive reform process of the country in all fields, and a contribution to spreading a new culture in the country.
On the other hand, Administrative Control and Transparency Authority (ACTA) organised a virtual seminar on the employee charter of integrity of employees in the public and private sectors. The seminar reviewed the Charter of Integrity of Public Officials, which was issued this year by the Council of Ministers, as well as its objectives and role in combating corruption. The Code of Judicial Conduct issued by the Supreme Judicial Council was also discussed.
A number of speakers participated in the virtual event, where head of Investigations Department at ACTA Majed Abdullah al-Qahtani, who moderated the seminar, talked about the International Anti-Corruption Day, held under the theme “Recover with Integrity to Build Forward Better”. The Seminar discussed the Charter of Integrity of Public Officials, which was issued by Cabinet decision No 18 of 2020.
Director of Control and Development Department at ACTA Amel Ahmed al-Kuwari, also talked about the Charter of Integrity of Public Officials, saying it is a set of rules of professional conduct that apply to civil servants working in ministries, government agencies and public institutions.
She said that the Charter aims to uphold ethics and values of integrity and transparency in relation to the public offices, and enhance basic rules and principles of job ethics that are based on honesty, sincerity, objectivity and impartiality in addition to enhancing the confidence of service recipients in the services providers. She also presented the most important principles contained in the Charter.
For his part, HE Judge Ali al-Jusaiman talked about the Judicial Code of Conduct, which aims to uphold the independence, integrity, impartiality and efficiency of judges and their assistants as well as the effectiveness of their procedures, and their mission to consolidate the rule of law.
Representative of the Organisation for Economic Co-operation and Development (OECD), Karen Badr, touched on the best practices of codes of conduct, and also shed light on the role of OECD in combating corruption and bribery.
Al-Anood al-Langawi, In-charge of Training Planning at the Ministry of Administrative Development, Labour and Social Affairs (MADLSA), shed light on the efforts made by MADLSA to train employees on the Charter of Integrity of Public Officials, and circulating it in the government institutions. She also touched on the programmes provided by the Institute of Administration in this field, and the training plan of the Institute for the next year, which feature 10 specialised training programmes related to the Charter.
Within the framework of the relentless efforts made by ACTA in the field of combating corruption, the authority also organised a training course on “Understanding Principles and Ethics of Media” in co-operation with Al Jazeera Media Institute, with the participation of a number of Qatari media professionals and activists in the field of modern media.
The course aimed at disseminating knowledge of the concepts of integrity and transparency.
It also aimed to consolidate and strengthen the principles of values, ethics and integrity in the media, in addition to identifying the theories and foundations of media work, promoting the application of integrity and transparency in the media, shedding light on the laws that govern it, ensuring freedom of opinion in a manner that does not harm the freedoms and privacy of others, and strengthening professional principles and ethical charters that regulate the work of media professionals. — QNA