For the next five years, we are going to focus on four prioritized and strategic goals. To achieve all of them, we must perceive them as a single integrated activity, each reinforcing the others. These four prioritized activities will have an impact on four key areas of Congolese society: the people, values, institutions, and laws.
As our movement against corruption grows, the ACRC will play roles in a variety of capacities. Working together, building coalitions and creating constructive engagement will be our guiding principles. In the pursuit of these, we will multiply the impact of our work from sub-national to national levels.
SO 1: Diagnose corruption issues and use findings as a reference to stimulate more informed debates and formulate further projects on anti-corruption
Although corruption is a well-known phenomenon, whether people talk about it openly or not will depend on the availability of reliable sources of information. In that sense the ACRC, under consultation of anti-corruption experts will develop tools and conduct specific, in-depth assessments, research and studies, on corruption in DRC. The studies and assessments will include but not be limited to a National Integrity System Assessment, the Integrity KAP Survey, and a compilation of existing studies on corruption-related issues. The studies’ findings and recommendations will be assessed and used as a reference to influence policy changes or stimulate further debate on the corruption issues in DRC.
To ensure public acceptance, partnership and ownership of the findings from the above studies and research, CERC will work closely with other relevant stakeholders including the Congolese Government’s Anti-Corruption Agency (APLC), NGOs and civil society organizations, media and other professional research institutes through the formulation of the Advisory Group.
In addition, the ACRC will look into best practices, examples and models from other countries in the region and from the around the world. Tools that have effectively been used to fight will be introduced to anti-corruption stakeholders in DRC, and adapted for use in the Congolese context. The ACRC will play its role as a resource centre for supplying related anti-corruption tools and materials to Congolese advocates.
Implementing these activities will lead to achieving the following results:
- Reliable sources of reference on corruption issues in DRC will be made available for the public and stakeholders to use.
- The society, especially the anti-corruption stakeholders will be more precisely aware of the specific corruption issues that matter to them and to the whole society. This awareness will generate greater reaction to corrupt acts and stronger demand for integrity.
- More anti-corruption projects and initiatives will be generated and implemented after sharing the results from the research, studies and assessment as well as the collection of best practices, models and tools from other countries.
SO 2: Build and support partnerships and coalitions of civil society organizations to fight corruption more effectively
Fighting corruption by any means in DRC is still very dangerous, and doing so effectively requires a joint effort of many institutions and individuals from all different spectrums in the society including state and non-state actors, as well as individuals. Working closely with the leading anti-corruption development partners, we will play a role in facilitating coordination among the institutions that are actively engaged and involved in the fight against corruption. The ACRC will set up a supporting mechanism through which regular dialogues and exchange of information among these stakeholders and individuals, such as the high-level anti-corruption dialogue, can be held.
This coordination mechanism will also contribute to promoting effectiveness and efficiency in the use of resources and expertise in implementing project activities to fight corruption. Moreover, it is also a very good avenue to facilitate the sharing of experience and knowledge among active anti-corruption institutions and advocates so that they can continue to improve and adopt their work and strategy as needed in a timely manner.
In addition, to fight corruption successfully also requires widespread public engagement on the issue. It also needs people to be equipped to take action. Consequently, a focus of the ACRC over the next three and half years will be to build and support coalitions among institutions and individuals from across DRC. These will include relevant government ministries, NGOs, youth and students, media, private companies, law enforcement institutions and local authorities.
Wherever and whenever possible and appropriate, joint projects will be developed to address corruption issues and promote accountability and transparency. These will be implemented by relevant institutions and interested organizations in cooperation with the APLC.
Implementing this goal will achieve the following results:
- Resources to fight corruption will be more effectively and efficiently distributed among key stakeholders, while effective learning avenues will be facilitated regularly.
- Cooperation and networking among many anti-corruption stakeholders will be established that multiply the impact of the work to fight against corruption.
- A larger number of individuals and organizations in the coalition to fight corruption will be established which increases the influence to advocate for a better anti-corruption policy framework and law enforcements.
SO 3: Engage citizens and young people in promoting integrity more actively
Raising awareness on the negative effects of corruption among the citizens is important but it is even more crucial to secure their active participation in the fight against corruption. In order to do so, the ACRC will create more opportunities for citizens to get involved in the fight against corruption by establishing Integrity Clubs in secondary schools.
Engaging citizens is fundamental in our effort at project level. Citizens become more engaged once they understand the benefits of their involvement, and when they are provided the means and the skills to do so. In this sense, The ACRC will educate citizens not only about the harmful effects of corruption but also the skills and knowledge necessary for them to get involved in stopping it.
In order to do so, the ACRC will seek to work with NGO partners from across DRC in implementing various project activities. In addition, the ACRC will actively engage youth in promoting integrity and accountability through supporting youth to youth initiatives and collaborating with leading youth organizations and networks from across the province.
Furthermore, the ACRC will cooperate with the Congolese Prevention and Anti-Corruption Agency and utilize the influence from its coalitions and partners to advocate for inclusion for education curriculum in the subject of integrity and ethical values in the education system. The ACRC will also seek to expand education on integrity through information systems and youth networks when appropriate and possible.
This goal will achieve the following results:
- Citizens will have more opportunities and are encouraged to take part actively in promoting integrity.
- Various youth engagement initiatives will be established and led by youth organizations and networks bringing stronger voices from the young population of DRC.
- Students and young people will receive education on integrity through formal or informal education programs. The hope is that they will uphold such values as they enter the workforce, and create greater demand for integrity in society.
- Government, in particular the Ministry of Education, will agree to incorporate anti-corruption and integrity as subjects on the education curriculum.
SO 4: Build governance foundations and operational structures and processes for scaling up anti-corruption and integrity building works in other provinces
For our institutions to fight corruption successfully, we must be equipped with the necessary skills and expertise. Therefore one of our prioritized areas for the next three and half years will be to build capacity of our institution and its core staff members. The ACRC has successfully mobilized a group of eminent individuals who will establish the foundation of a sustainable presence in South-Kivu and North-Kivu.
It is very important however, that the ACRC’s core capacities are developed to use the tools and support to constructively participate in the national forum on corruption. Moreover, the ACRC must work in collaboration with various anti-corruption institutions such as APLC and various civil society organizations towards the implementation of the necessary reforms and enforcement of the anti-corruption laws.
Tapping into the global expertise and resources, the ACRC has great opportunities to benefit significantly concerning enhancing knowledge and skills. In addition, the ACRC will broaden its networks with other partners in all regions, through participating in regional meetings, and through appropriate partners exchange visits.
In addition, the ACRC must be institutionally strong in its internal governance, leadership, credibility, and legitimacy in the country. This is one of our priorities for the next three and half years. We will seek all capacity development opportunities provided by Integrity Action for our own staff as well as developing our organizational capacity and governance systems over this period and beyond.
As the ACRC progressively develops its institutional capacity, it will gradually be seen as a bridge to national anti-corruption resources and expertise on anti-corruption after these three and half years and will begin to transform itself to be one of the capacity development institutions in anti-corruption work for DRC.
This work will produce the following results:
- The ACRC’s Board of Directors comprising of eminent individuals from diverse backgrounds and expertise (development, human rights, democratic governance, youth development, private sectors and capacity development) are mobilized.
- The ACRCs Executive Director and Board are given opportunities to participate in regional and international anti-corruption events through which learning from and networking with other partners and international experts can be convened.
- The ACRC is legally registered with the Ministry of Justice and has full legality and legitimacy to conduct its anti-corruption work.
- Mutual understanding, trust and confidence between Congolese stakeholders, in particular Congolese institutions and the ACRC are achieved.
- The ACRC and its core members have strong commitment and are working towards compliance with criteria and requirements of donors.
- All necessary legal frameworks and organizational policies including: by-laws, financial management manuals and staff policies are in place.