Non-Aligned Movement recognises the threat corruption poses to the economic and political stability in the developing nations. The Movement has stressed that corruption practices, including lack of sound international corporate governance, bribery, money laundering and transfer abroad of illegally acquired funds and assets undermine and severely endanger the efforts of developing countries towards sustainable development. The Movement has reiterated the need for developing and promoting effective policies and practices aimed at the prevention of corruption. NAM has reaffirmed the importance of enhancing cooperation and collaboration, in particular through the promotion of best practices in combating corruption.
An important step in this regard has been the Lima Commitment “Democratic Governance Against Corruption” which was signed by 34 countries during the Eighth Summit of the Americas which took place in the Peruvian capital Lima on April 13-14, 2018. The Lima Commitment recognises that the prevention of and fight against corruption is fundamental to strengthening democracy and rule of laws. The 57-point statement on democratic governance against corruption calls for the reinforcement of democratic governance, ensuring transparency, access to information, protection of whistle-blowers, freedom of expression and international legal cooperation for the fight against bribery, international corruption, organized crime, and money laundering; and asset recovery.
The Lima Commitment calls for strengthening democratic institutions, judicial autonomy and Promoting public awareness and citizen participation campaigns for the prevention of and participation in the fight against corruption and impunity, and on the tools available to address and combat corruption.
The Commitment calls on the signatories to strengthen national anti-corruption measures or systems and enhancing conditions for the effective participation of civil society, social organizations, academia, the private sector, citizens, and other social actors in monitoring government performance, including the development of prevention mechanisms, channels for reporting possible acts of corruption and facilitating the work of watchdogs including other citizen oversight mechanisms, and incentivizing the adoption of digital means of participation. In this context, it calls for the use of new technologies that facilitate digital government in order to promote transparency, interaction with citizens and accountability, through development of tools for the identification, detection, systematization, and monitoring of government procedures and, to that end, strengthening cooperation and exchange of best practices on the development and application of such technologies. It also calls to work with related UN and inter-American organizations and to establish an inter-American open data program within the Organization of American States (OAS).
The Lima Commitment has called on States to devise measures that would keep a check on the financing of political organisations and election campaigns. It calls for promoting transparency, accountability, appropriate accounting, and use of the banking system for income and expenditures of political organizations and parties, especially those related to their electoral campaigns, in order to guarantee the licit origin of the contributions and penalizing anyone involved in accepting illicit contributions.
Lima Commitment also calls for strengthening the international legal and institutional cooperation framework to prevent the region’s financial systems from being misused for the transfer and concealment of funds derived from acts of corruption, including those criminal offences specified in the United Nations Convention against Corruption and the Inter-American Convention against Corruption. It also calls on States to establish multilateral networks and initiatives against money laundering, by providing the broadest and most rapid assistance possible to identify, trace, freeze, confiscate, forfeit, and recover assets.
NAM Member States in the Americas that are signatories to the Lima Commitment support this initiative to fight corruption. For example, Peru has accorded a high priority to the fight against Corruption. In September 2018, Peru’s Permanent Representative to the Organization of American States (OAS) Ana Rosa Valdivieso promoted the implementation of the Lima Commitment “Democratic Governance against Corruption. She pointed out the importance of the 57 points contained in the Lima Commitment.
Panama along with the World Bank and OAS has sponsored the Panama Accords to enhance transparency and accountability in Latin America and the Caribbean countries, aimed at fighting corruption and mobilizing greater private financing for development. The Accord includes a series of measures destined to improve the quality and transparency of fiscal and financial reporting, strengthen accountability in the public sector and enhance cooperation among the various players involved in development, namely governments, the private sector and civil society.