Stakeholders at a review session in Accra on Basics in Integrity Manual for young people, have agreed that for Ghana’s fight against corruption to be won and sustained, the country must shift focus in the fight to its future leaders, that is the youth.
This forms the premise on which Lead Afrique International, with support from STAR-Ghana and in partnership with the National Council for Curriculum and Assessment, (NaCCA), have developed the integrity educational manual to teach the next generation of young people in a structured way, the value of integrity and hopefully improve upon the next generation of Ghana’s leaders.
Co-Founder of Lead Afrique, Michael Ohene-Effah explained that Ghana has been at the fore front of fighting corruption, yet the country continuous to average about 38 point 86 in the Corruption Index from 1998 until 2018, reaching an all-time high of 48 Points in 2014 and a record low of 33 Points in 1999. Furthermore, Ghana scored 41 points out of 100 on the 2018 Corruption Perception Index reported by Transparency International.
Mr. Ohene-Effah said ”according to the UNDP, with corruption being one of the top-causes for the “missed” development of Africa over the past 40 years, young people are bearing its highest costs.
Illicit financial flows cost Africa from at least 30 billion dollars to 60 billion dollars every year.
Considering that African countries are spending on average percent of total GDP of about One point Five trillion on public education every year, ”this would mean that corruption is subtracting more than half of the resources that could finance education for the whole continent every year”.
He expressed optimism that ”the Basics in Integrity Educational Manual which comprises, readers manual, teachers guide and an animated manual is required as an answer to Ghana’s shortfall and gaps in the fight against corruption”.
NCCE Chairperson, Josephine Nkrumah said the Commission is happy to see a Basics in Integrity Education Manual for the young ones, because it falls in line with the push to ensure that the corruption fight is sustained.
She alluded to the millions of dollars Ghana looses to corruption annually and said, ”corruption is the bane of the country’s national development, hence gradually eating off all the democratic gains”.
The NCCE Chairperson said a ”legal framework alone is not enough to uproot corruption, parents and guardians must begin to model the way, coupled with the teaching of integrity in schools, the community and in our homes is crucial to the fight against corruption”.
Acting CEO of STAR-Ghana Foundation, Ibrahim Tanko-Amidu congratulated the stakeholders in coming out with the integrity manual and said collaboration is key to moving the process of fighting corruption forward.
He said citizens should shun politicians who talk only politics without any positive change, because ”politicizing matters of corruption will rather derail the process to uproot the canker”.
Mr. Amidu pointed out that beyond mobilizing critical mass on the subject matter,” it is also important to talk about it by re-examining the process and look at what has worked and what has not worked in the fight against corruption, so as to apply lessons learnt”.
Technical Brain behind the Basics in Integrity Manual, Dr. Charles Adabo Oppong acknowledged the gap of integrating integrity into the school curricula.
He said the manual being produced is apt and has the ultimate goal to produce ”the next generation of Ghanaian citizens who will say no to corruption, understand corruption and impact corruption”.
Story by Rebecca Ekpe