According to a statement released by the EU Office in Kabul, the campaign will focus on the following four themes: natural resources and stability – the threat of illegal mining, corruption in the judicial sector, prevention of corruption and corruption in the security sector.
“The campaign aims to underscore the important role of awareness raising, prevention and government-citizens partnership as a cross cutting pillar of the fight against corruption,” the EU statement said.
A cultural change of behavior, investigative journalism and citizens stands against corruption have been identified as the main ways to diminish corrupt practices.
The campaign will run for seven weeks and will be ended with a high-level anti-corruption conference in May.
”Despite some progress in the fight against corruption, it remains endemic and poses a real existential threat to Afghanistan and the ambition to become a self-reliant state. Corruption weakens the security sector’s ability to faceoff the insurgency and it hampers the ability of the public administration to provide basic service to the people. It undermines investments in the country and stands in the way of economic growth and job creation. Therefore it also deprives the Afghan youth their hopes for a better future in the country. This simply needs to change. Without a stronger fight against corruption and a real change in the culture of corruption, Afghanistan risk to remain a weak state completely reliant on foreign aid,” said EU Special Representative in Afghanistan, Ambassador Franz-Michael Mellbin.
“Our first focus is on the illegal extraction of natural resources in Afghanistan. This is now the second largest source of income for insurgents and as such it causes lives lost in Afghanistan every day. Despite this we have seen very little action and the EU strongly urges the Government to start taking tangible action to stop illegal mining in the country,” Ambassador Mellbin added.
By: Hesamuddin Hesam