A college level textbook published by AMAN and titled, “Integrity, Transparency, and Accountability for Combating Corruption,” has recently undergone a series of updates and was republished in its third edition. In light of these new updates, AMAN hosted an event comprised of college professors and academics from seven Palestinian universities in the West Bank and Gaza. The list of attendees included: the University of Jerusalem (Abu Dis), Al- Istiqlal University, the Modern University College, Birzeit University, as well as the Ummah University in Gaza. All of which teach the textbook as part of their curriculum. The event was held to acquaint universities with the content of the book’s third edition and acquire their feedback. Subsequent to the valuable input and recommendations they have provided during the book’s earlier developmental phases.
The core purpose of the meeting was to discuss the book’s new edition and give heed to the views of professors and academics regarding its content and topics. Dr. Azmi Shuaibi - AMAN's Commissioner for Combating Corruption - applauded the academics for their efforts with students, and their role in instilling among them, values of integrity principles of transparency and systems of accountability. He emphasized the importance of building a network of relationships as well as channels of communication between academics experienced in teaching the book, and Aman - the powerhouse in the fight against corruption. AMAN shall also lead an administrative role, where it will coordinate periodic meetings among this group of academics; to ensure lasting and fruitful cooperation within the group, in addition to cooperation between the group and AMAN.
Understanding how to combat corruption is imperative; thus, textbooks addressing this concept must be taught as part of the Palestinian universities’ curriculum, seeing that it illustrates the National Anti-Corruption and Integrity Network as a comprehensive preventative measure to combat corruption. Professor Abeer Musleh - Head of the Research and Development Unit at AMAN - touched upon this issue, and reviewed the most important updates, additions or omissions from the book. She emphasized the significance of public awareness and societal values in building a culture of integrity through enhanced understanding for concepts of integrity, transparency and accountability. In addition, the book touches upon a vital issue; the challenges facing The Arab Anti-Corruption and Integrity Network, which intersect with the Palestinian reality to a large extent.
Within the legal context of combating corruption in Palestinian, Mr. Bilal Barghouti - AMAN’s legal advisor, pointed to the most prominent changes which took place over the Palestinian legal system, and provided practical examples on the issue. He also spoke about the United Nations Convention against Corruption (UNCAC), and to what degree are Palestinian legislation and policies in tune with the Convention.
At the conclusion of the meeting, academics unanimously agreed on the importance of teaching the textbook to law and public administration students. However, they confirmed - based on their personal experiences - the course should be offered as a general college prerequisite and should not be limited to students from specific majors. Given the quality and significance of the information contained in the book. Furthermore, participants were willing to fully engage in any activity organized by AMAN to serve this cause.