We provide Government institutions with support for the development of effective anti & counter-corruption policy development.
Parliamentary policy is important for the codification of the Government's position on corruption and the formation or empowerment of anti and counter-corruption bodies. At a Ministerial level, the implementation of policy and practices to support the operation of these entities in the identification and elimination of corruption is vital to providing service to the electorate as well as ensuring that public monies are used appropriately.
In 2015, we worked closely with the Ministry of Finance (MOF) to draft their platform for presentation to the Overseas Coordination Board (OCB), that was later presented in January 2016 to the donor countries, which provide vital funding for Afghanistan. Corruption was a major concern of the donor countries, and to address these concerns, JTACC developed the ‘Governance, Compliance & Enforcement’ platform for the MOF.
JTACC attended the OCB as an advisor to the MOF in the lead-up to the January 2015 full-OCB conference. These workshops provided a valuable insight into the perception of the overseas financial donor community and the development programs in Afghanistan as well as the perception of corruption as a barrier to the success of the country’s stabilization and transition from war.
Corruption has been a long-standing issue in Afghanistan, but is not a simple problem. Rather, it has evolved as a de facto form of income and service provision, for a country that has been in conflict for almost 40 years. It is an environmental condition from deprivation, conflict and the absence of reliable and trusted Government.
Corruption and anti-corruption as practices are evocative terms, describing a situation fraught with criminality, investment and development failure. In the context of a country such as Afghanistan, where bribery is normative in transactions, counter and anti-corruption strategies risk being alienating, and therefore experience resistance with their implementation.
Afghanistan is a society that needs to transition from the economic practices of a society rooted in conflict, that has relied on societal and familial affiliations to provide security, to one where law, governance and regulation are trusted. To understand corruption in Afghanistan, requires an understanding of society and how corruption became an embedded part of financial transactions.
The platform developed for OCB represented a paradigm shift in how we not only discuss corruption in Afghanistan, but how we address it. The platform and presentation was based on a three-tier approach of Governance, Compliance and Enforcement. The inherent concept being that the Government needs to create and define a ministerial society, that is customer and service orientated, and where corruption does not have a place.
The presentation was well-received by the donor-funding community, and we were requested by the Deputy Ambassador of Canada to visit their Embassy in Kabul to discuss our insights into corruption and the environments that enable it as a practice.