Four weeks before the new elections Spanish President Rajoy opened finally, after 4 years govern, an anticorruption office. Part of the Ministry of Justice, the office investigates the existence of black money and who is involved. Motive is that nobody shall enjoy stolen money. The detected money is used to social purposes. The opposition reacted strongly: Too late and non-committed! Understandable, because the President said in 2013 he would crack down corrupted party members. However, the political leader never judged in public any member for affecting the image of the public sector ignoring citizens. He leaves that to the prosecutor and the judge.
Despite, better late then never. A calculation of the social costs of corruption shows an amount of billions of euros. An office that forces criminals to pay back their revenues strengthens society and contributes to a professional image of public administration. An office has a long breath; a politician comes and goes and therefore is less relevant.
How else can run with people who are involved by heart with good governance and integrity. A participant of the Integrity Course 2014 in The Hague sent me next illustration.
‘We as participants work slowly, but steadily, marching towards big decision-makers, luckily infected by integrity. The last section of the book ‘To Be Honest’ that addresses directly to the institutions, universities, amongst others, inspired me. Since I am a lecturer at The Law Faculty of a private University in Serbia, I proposed to its Dean setting up a course, a kind of permanent workshop, called Academy of Integrity (or something more creative). The main topic and the central theme of activity would be integrity. Thus students, as young, free and brave layer of society, could be sensitized to this crucial social value. Free in expressing what kind of society they would like to live in, addressing directly to the public institutions (through organised visits, dialogues, publishing open letters etc.) and public service representatives. Just like in Maria’s letter published in a Spanish magazine on what kind of society she would like to live in. This programme could include various courses, creating a website as a forum and media through which this workshop can be active, multiple competitions and quizzes that can, in a fun way, inspire the youth to express themselves regarding this topic. The Dean supported me, agreeing to build up a team that will work on this issue.
It seems that we all after attending the integrity course are the ambassadors of integrity ourselves!’
Integrity is a tough march through the institutions to sensitive bureaucracy for good governance. However integrity is also a lively way of organization and investigation. It is about the future and the way we make agreements and keep other motivated.
Two different worlds but both are needed and complement each other.