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There is an inextricable link between corruption and effective law enforcement. The Caribbean region is deeply affected by corruption which is a pressing threat to democracy and good governance, and which corrodes important elements of social capital, principal of which is trust.
The Jamaica Constabulary Force (JCF) and the United States Agency for International Development (USAID) hosted the first Regional Law Enforcement Anti-Corruption Conference on March 22-23, 2011 at the Pegasus Hotel, Kingston, Jamaica. The two day conference brought together several actors to address issues of corruption and its effects on law enforcement. The conference under the theme "Towards Regional Cooperation for Anti-Corruption" served as the launch pad for the formation of a Regional Law Enforcement Anti-Corruption Network and provided the forum for collaboration in the draft of a regional anti-corruption strategy.
UNDP took part to this inaugural Caribbean Basin Security Initiative as an active partner in global, regional and national efforts to combat corruption. Speaking at the Opening Ceremony of the conference, Ms Akiko Fujii, Deputy Resident Representative, emphasized that corruption hurts human development, diverting public resources to private gain and reducing access to public services.
" Integrity is essential to democracy and meeting the Millennium Development Goals (MDGs)." Ms. Fujii said. The UNDP Deputy Resident Representative shared the UNDP global experience and efforts in anti-corruption including its support to countries in developing national anti-corruption laws, enforcing international anti-corruption conventions and establishing national integrity bodies for transparency and accountability.
In calling on all stakeholders to play their part Ms. Fujii spoke to UNDP's support to anti-corruption efforts in Jamaica, through the Building Civil Society Capacity to support good Governance by Local Authorities project. This project which is being implemented by the University of West Indies Centre for leadership and Governance aims to strengthen the capacity of Parish Development Committees (PDCs) to impact financial transparency and accountability of parish councils and municipalities through such mechanism as Local Accounts Committees or LPACs. Thes project, which began in June 2010, is an example of the multi-stakeholder collaboration that is needed to foster an environment of transparency and so mitigate corruption.
Find more information on:Jamaica Anti-Corruption Branch