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Posted On: 12 November 2009 02:34 pm
Updated On: 12 November 2020 02:10 pm

Women in politics ‘less corrupt’ than men

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The more the percentage of women in political bodies, the less the incidence of corruption in these countries, says a famous anti-corruption consultant citing studies. Researches have shown that women with larger share of parliamentary seats in a country, for example, lower the level of corruption, said Londa Esadze, from Georgia. An anti-corruption consultant for several global organisations and a Ph D, Esadze was taking part in a panel discussion on ‘The Role of Corruption on Trafficking in Persons’ yesterday. The discussion was held on the sidelines of a global anti-corruption meet going on here which, it is hoped, would make an effective UN Treaty on fighting corruption. Studies suggest that gender balance in political bodies of some countries ensures least corruption. In this regard she cited the example of Scandinavian countries where, she said, women had higher percentage of participation in public life, so corruption levels were low. “Women have higher standards of ethical behaviour,” she added. The panel discussion was moderated by Julie Kvammen, from the United Nations Office on Drugs and Crime. Other panelists included Caroline Hames, Lilian Ekeanyanwu, from the Nigerian government, and Klara Skrivankova, from Anti-Slavery International. Esadze also wondered why a man is to be preferred for a manager’s post, while a woman is to be picked as his secretary. She also talked of the vulnerability of working women to sexual exploitation in matters like promotion. Skrivankova said that trafficking in humans was one of the three most profitable crimes in the world, perhaps more than drugs and arms trade. She insisted there is a strong linkage between corruption and trafficking as the latter is not possible without some amount of corruption among public officials, including in the countries of origin of victims. Corruption in trafficking in persons can directly and indirectly affect a wide range of people and communities, from direct victims of trafficking or people who are very vulnerable and at risk to falling prey to traffickers, or non-governmental service providers and other organisations. The speakers stressed the role of civil societies and private sector in fighting trafficking. They called for launching anti-corruption measures such as incentives for and protection of whistleblowers, measures relating to ensuring the integrity of public officials, adequate remuneration and pay scales, general awareness and education about corruption would go a long way in combating corruption, they said.