Appeared in the Newtimes on August 25, 2016
The Office of the Ombudsman has launched a nine-day countrywide campaign to sensitise the public against corruption.
The campaign will see 2,052 representatives of local institutions, cooperatives and associations countrywide sensitised on corruption.
The trainees include 350 commercial motorcyclists, 150 taxi drivers, 216 people from different institutions in charge of internal audits, 1,036 executive secretaries of cells and all engineers at the sector level.
Others include 300 representatives of faith based organisations and traders among other trainees from youth anti corruption clubs.
During the launch of the drive on Wednesday in Kigali, at least 50 motorcyclists from Gasabo District were trained.
Athanase Gatera, the System Review Officer, investigator and in charge of fighting corruption at the Office of the Ombudsman, explained that corruption promotes personal interests which hinders the development of the country generally.
He added that it affects justice and causes disharmony in the community.
“Today’s training was organised for motorcyclists to explain to them the meaning of corruption so that they can understand corruption and the ways it manifests. Otherwise, they risk engaging in bribery in their daily work,” he said.
He added that the training will help taxi-moto operators to fight corruption as teams.
It is the responsibility of Office of the Ombudsman to sensitise people on graft fight. Our focus is to explain to citizens that they do not have to pay for the government services rendered to them, he said.
He noted that working together could be a good way to completely fight corruption, adding that there is also a need for personal transformation as corruption is rooted in one’s mindset.
Daniel Ngarambe, the president of GECOM, a cooperative of taxi-moto operators in Kimironko sector, Gasabo said the training will help reduce cases of corruption among them.
“Some operators ignorantly get involved in bribery. They sometimes practice corruption in form of tokens which could be classified as bribes.”
He added that he would share the lessons learnt with his colleagues who did not attend so that together they can fight the vice.
Simeon Utazirubanda, the president of Motorists Union in Gasabo District, said the training shaped the minds of participants, noting that ignorance of the vice among motorists was responsible for most bribery cases.
“We knew that corruption is committed as money changes hands. I expect positive changes after the training,” he added.