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  • Sharanja De Zoysa

Corruption - SLMUN Article 1

‘You’ll never know the psychopath sitting next to you, you’ll never know the murderer sitting next to you’

UNODC - 2016

The “insidious plague” that is corruption is a growing concern and an issue that must be addressed by reevaluating and strengthening the existing UN convention on corruption.

As the Delegate of Pakistan stated, the convention is somewhat “outdated” and “criminals are getting smarter” therefore it is important to reassess it, in order to better combat corruption in the world.

The issue of addressing corruption at grass root level was also touched upon during the extremely heated debate. The need to strike a balance between sovereignty and transparency was also a frequently brought up concern. Overall today’s debate revolved around the need to fight corruption and come up with viable methods to control corruption.

No one likes a corrupt government where socio-economic progress is halted in the name of the selfish pursuits of government officials. An example of this is the Taliban using the revenue from opium production (90% of the world’s opium) to buy arms and for their own personal gain. The Delegate of Afghanistan due to concerns regarding the lack of sufficient rights and protection of child laborers producing opium and other drugs brought up this issue.

‘You’ll never know the psychopath sitting next to you, you’ll never know the murderer sitting next to you’. As the Delegate of Mexico brought up, President Putin has been accused of murder (the poisoning of Alexander Litvinenko in 2006) and due to his sovereign immunity he was given a “get out of jail free card”. A pertinent issue was drawing a balance between immunity and corruption and distinguishing where to draw the line for sovereign immunity.

Whistle blowers… do we love them or hate them? The negativity associated with the concept of whistle blowing, corporate espionage or “snitching” and whether or not it is a good thing. Corporate corruption is a yet another issue that requires attention and the feasibility of combating this with the help of whistle blowers. Money laundering and scams carried out by corporate firms that are bleeding dry society. The practicability of judicial independence in order to limit bribery and to ensure justice prevails. Thoughts on limiting the power of the World Bank… these were amongst the many things that sparked and enlivened debate in the committee and the zeal and intensity of many of the speakers made debate interesting.

‘Power corrupts, and absolute power corrupts absolutely’ ~ Lord Acton

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