Corruption remains a major stumbling block for justice sector reforms - UNDP

Corrupt judicial systems undermine reforms and are a major impediment to ensuring access to justice and human rights for ordinary citizens across the world, says A Transparent and Accountable Judiciary to Deliver Justice for All, a new report published 8 April 2016 by the United Nations Development Programme (UNDP) and the U4 Anti-corruption Resource Centre at Chr. Michelsen Institute.

People in many countries believe the judiciary is the second most corrupt public institution, after the police, according to global survey data cited by the UNDP report.

“Judicial corruption disproportionately affects the poorest and most marginalised citizens of a community because they are far less likely to be able to pay a bribe or have access to influential networks,” notes Patrick Keuleers, Director, Governance and Peacebuilding at UNDP headquarters.

Justice for All highlights successful and inspiring experiences in promoting transparency and accountability within the judiciary from Afghanistan, Bosnia and Herzegovina, Colombia, Indonesia, Kenya, Kosovo*, Nepal, Nigeria, Paraguay, Philippines, and Somalia.

“We are advocating that judiciaries open themselves to peer learning by engaging with counterparts in other countries and allowing meaningful capacity assessments that will lead to judicial integrity,” says Phil Matsheza, Regional Practice Leader in UNDP’s Bangkok Regional Hub.

Cobus de Swardt, Managing Director of the International Secretariat of Transparency International, says “This new report gives critical first-hand answers about promoting integrity in the courts by building citizen and other stakeholders’ support for reforms and by using technology to increase judicial transparency.”

Justice for All is published by UNDP’s Regional Bureau for Asia and the Pacific and can be accessed online here (http://on.undp.org/dMP).

For more information, please contact Elodie Beth, UNDP Regional Anti-Corruption Advisor, at elodie.beth@undp.org.

*The reference to Kosovo is understood to be in the context of Security Council Resolution 1244 (1999).

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