7 November 2011
A new cross-party parliamentary group launched today will be well positioned to keep in check the Government’s commitment to tackling corruption, says Tearfund. The Christian development agency has been working with MPs to launch the All-Party Parliamentary Group on Anti-Corruption.
“The effects of corruption are profound, causing insidious harm to poor communities,” says Paul Cook, Tearfund Advocacy Director. ‘These communities are routinely and critically impacted by corruption, and often marginalised by poor governance.
“The UK is not exempt from its involvement in international corruption and needs to take an active role in stamping it out. This new parliamentary group will be in the thick of scrutinising government policy and working to ensure that the UK Government is having maximum effect.”
Many parliamentarians have worked hard over recent years to further efforts to tackle corruption, however currently there is no provision within Parliament for a dedicated group responsible for scrutiny of the UK’s anti-corruption policies and compliance with international conventions. This is why committed parliamentarians have been working with Tearfund and other agencies, such as the Hansard Society and the Bond Anti-Corruption group, to initiate the group.
“Whilst a number of all-party groups and MPs have considered corruption issues as part of their wider work, this new cross-party parliamentary group will provide a focal point for British parliamentarians to work together to champion best practice, and to work alongside parliamentarians in all parts of the world to play an essential role in defeating corruption at every level in society,” says Catherine McKinnell, MP for Newcastle upon Tyne North, who will chair the group. “We share an obligation to stand in solidarity and do all we can to help the millions of people who are affected by corruption. I look forward to working with Members from both Houses to ensure that the UK plays its part on this crucial issue, and to linking with the Global Organisation of Parliamentarians Against Corruption.”
The All-Party Parliamentary Group on Anti-Corruption is launched on Monday 7 November. Speakers include Secretary of State for Justice, the Rt Hon Ken Clarke QC MP and John Githongo of the UK’s Independent Commission for Aid Impact.
"It is essential that parliamentarians take a lead in holding governments to account to defeat corruption," says John Githongo. "I'm excited about the launch of this new UK parliamentary group. Working together, supporting this group and others worldwide, I look forward to a time when we shall see corruption loosening its grip on society and a more equitable livelihood for all citizens as a result."
Notes for Editors
John Githongo is well known for his pioneering anti-corruption work in Kenya and across Africa. Formerly a member of the Kenyan Government, he is currently Chief Executive officer of the Inuka Kenya Trust, a Commissioner on the UK’s Independent Commission for Aid Impact, and a respected editorialist and advocate for transparency and good governance.
Secretary of State for Justice, the Rt Hon Ken Clarke is the UK's International Anti-Corruption Champion.
The APPG on Anti-Corruption aims to establish a UK Parliamentary link to GOPAC (Global Organisation of Parliamentarians against Corruption), joining a network of parliamentarians dedicated to good governance and combating corruption throughout the world. Currently there are over 900 members from 90 countries.
Tearfund report Better Together: the crucial role that citizens play in fighting corruption.
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