2016 Activities

Celebrating of the international Anti-Corruption Day and awarding the ‘ knights of integrity’ 2016

Celebrating of the international Anti-Corruption Day and awarding the ‘ knights of integrity’ 2016

Ramallah and Gaza- AMAN Coalition held its Eleventh National Integrity Ceremony in celebration of the World Anti-Corruption Day on 9 December, awarding the ‘2016 knights of integrity’ in the West Bank and Gaza Strip. A large number of citizens, officials, as well as representatives of governmental and non-governmental organizations, partners, civil society organizations, international agencies and the media attended the ceremony.

In his opening remarks, Abdul Qader Husseini, the Chairperson of AMAN Board of Trustees, commended Palestine’s achievements during the previous period in combating corruption. He asserted that such success was the result of the collaboration of governmental and non-governmental organizations as well as the public at large, within the framework of a national action plan that identified tasks and responsibilities of these parties, and an achievable, measurable and assessable timeframe. He added that Palestine’s accession to the United Nations Convention against Corruption (UNCAC) requires taking measures that ensure compliance with its provisions, most notably approving the Access to Information Law.

Husseini expressed his concern towards the challenges that the Palestinian Judicial system faced recently and which adversely affect the prestige of the Palestinian Judiciary and the Palestinian citizens’ trust in the integrity of the judiciary and the judicial system.

Husseini warned the Palestinian official decision-makers of the importance of maintaining the principle of separation of powers and the protection of the Palestinian political system.

For the second consecutive year, AMAN hosts Rafiq Natsheh, Chairperson of the Anti-Corruption Commission (ACC), who commended in his speech AMAN’s efforts, asserting that cooperation with the civil society organizations was essential to ACC’s work. Natsheh agreed with Husseini that the Access to Information Law was a basic right and hindering its enactment was unjustified. He asserted that ACC is for the Palestinian people, and not for any other party, calling upon citizens to go to ACC and report corruption. He concluded by expressing ACC’s willingness to cooperate with AMAN to achieve the goals of the Palestinian people.

For the first time, AMAN announced the Best Caricature contest to address the problem of nepotism and cronyism in senior appointments, and the best video contest about one of the common forms of corruption in Palestine, and means of alleviating it. A number of talented artists presented their distinguished caricatures that addressed corruption. The first winner was Suhaib Mansour, the second was Safa Odeh and the third was Marwa Helou.

Moreover, Raed Qur’an and Aladdin Asqoul received shields of appreciation for their distinctive caricatures.   

As for the Best Video Award about a common form of corruption in Palestine, Ibrahim Battah ranked first, Firas Taweel ranked second and Huda Sadi ranked third.

Winners of the 2016 Integrity Award 

In her speech representing the Jury, Nadia Abu Nahle, commended the work of the technical committees, asserting that enhancing integrity, transparency and accountability in the different Palestinian sectors has become a major requirement for building and strengthening good governance in the society. Abu Nahle thanked the applicants for their courage, and their sense of responsibility towards their country and public affairs.

The winner of the Public Sector Integrity Award was Sa’ed Kamel Muakadi.

The ceremony included short films about the winners of the Integrity awards.  The winner of the Public Sector Integrity Award was Sa’ed Kamel Muakadi, who followed a lead that led to discovering forgery in official documents and abuse of power for personal gains. A decision to stop purchasing vehicles had been taken in July 2008, but approval for purchasing forty vehicles from the Israeli side was granted. He prevented the embezzlement of around 3 million Shekels by reporting the case to ACC. In 2012, the Anti-Corruption Court took a final decision in this case.

Winners of the 2016 Best Research Award (Basel Ja’abari, Eid Saifi and Hazem Issa)

The first winner of the Integrity Award for the best anti-corruption research were Basel Fakhry Ja’abari, for his research on governance in non-governmental and private hospitals in south Hebron. Eid Saifi and Hazem Issa ranked second with their research on a proposal to advance the role of Palestinian universities in spreading values of integrity and transparency.

Moreover, AMAN acknowledged the work of Abeer Kafarneh, Kayed Tanbour, Rania Shawwa and Nabil Ahmad Senunu, who addressed important topics in integrity and combating corruption.

Winners of the 2016 Media Integrity Award (Mohamad Jamal and Anas Abu Arqoub)

The winners of the 2016 Media Integrity Award were Mohamad Jamal and Anas Abu Arqoub who produced an investigative report entitled the prohibited chicken, shedding the light on the occupation farms that spread disease among the Gazans. The investigation revealed that the chicken has bacteria that causes several diseases, including colon infection, ulcerative colitis, intestinal infections and other diseases.

 Furthermore, AMAN granted journalists Lamis Homs and Ansar Tamizeh certificates of appreciation for their courageous investigative reports.

The 2016 Integrity Award was the eleventh, as AMAN annually grants moral and financial awards to persons who contributed to unveiling suspected corruption, in the public sector and local authorities, in the media and the best research. This year, AMAN added two new awards for the best caricature and the best video.    

This annual award aims at motivating different groups to act against corruption and the corrupt and to prevent their impunity. It also aims at encouraging them to shoulder their responsibilities and to report corruption as witnesses or as victims, since reporting corruption is a patriotic heroic act and not snitching.

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