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Wednesday, May 21, 2008

Governor Dick Thornburgh says that the Issue of Corruption has come to Center Stage

Dick Thornburgh
Originally uploaded by ICGFM

Former Governor of Pennsylvania, Dick Thornburgh, discussed the need to reduce official corruption in order to achieve economic development, during his keynote address for the Wednesday session of ICGFM. Governor Thornburgh says that we need to examine the cost and benefits of corruption and pointed out many high profile causes of corruption around the world.

As Under-secretary General of the United Nations, Governor Thornburgh recommended the creation of an Office of the Inspector General. This met significant opposition. Many copies of his report were immediately shredded. Corruption had been thought of at the World Bank, up until 1996, as a political situation that was outside the mandate of the World Bank. Good governance is required for economic growth and attack poverty.

Governor Thornburgh described the remarkable progress made in the international community over the past decade. He cautioned that the fight is not over and that more resources are required for international institutions like the World Bank and the United Nations.

The recent Washington Post article describing the "obsession with corruption" was cited as an example of the resistance against effective anti-corruption.

Governor Thornburgh provided a checklist for creating effective anti-corruption at the country level. Political will is the most important factor. :Without such leadership, even the most effective anti-corruption measures will fail."

Governor Thornburgh suggested that overcoming the threat of terrorism will expose the deep need for economic development. "Citizens worldwide will demand more accountability."

Governor Thornburgh speaks about the affect of corruption on society and the need for corruption to be public.

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