Anti-Corruption Day Contest and Student Engagement

Sandro Rochikashvili

ImageOn December 12 a presentation of the ideas of the students and the following award ceremony was held at the Ministry of Justice in the framework of the contest related to the International Anti-Corruption Day. All third-year or higher students of Georgia has the opportunity to participate in the contest.

The five selected students presented their ideas in front of a small audience, which consisted of the representatives of different civil society organizations and experts on the topics of corruption and Open Government Partnership. After the presentations the audience chose the best idea for fighting corruption in Georgia.

A significant part of the presentations focused or at least mentioned the issue of supporting the engagement of students in things like the fight with corruption, availability of information and transparency. It should be mentioned that only twenty students participated in the contest, which is a very small number if we consider the fact that the students are the most active part of the society.

In this light the suggestions about increasing the level of engagement among students becomes especially important. One of the main components of the Open Government Partnership is the engagement of civil society in government decision-making, which does not at all mean only the participation of non-governmental organizations. It is very important that a large number of students be engaged in processes and initiatives like, for instance, OGP, who will in turn provide information to their relatives, friends and acquaintances. The fact that only 20 students participated in the International Anti-Corruption Day contest is a clear indication that Georgia still has a long way to go before reaching the goal of greater civil participation in government affairs and the Ministry of Justice should demonstrate greater resolve effort in this direction.

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