Youth in the country have called for a united stand against corruption and transparency and accountability in all spheres.
The call came from the closing ceremony of Youth Against Corruption, a year-long campaign implemented jointly by the United Nations Development Programme (UNDP) and Bangladesh Debate Federation (BDF) in Dhaka, read a media release.
Attending the event as Chief Guest, Bangladesh National Parliament's Speaker Dr Shirin Sharmin Chaudhury MP said, "Bangladesh has made tremendous strides in development. We cannot let our progress be lost to corruption. We need to strengthen our institutions and institutional frameworks.
"Youth need to be engaged and involved at every level. Empowering youth against corruption is a unique and commendable idea. I thank UNDP and BDF for initiating this campaign. " she added.
Md Mozammel Haque Khan, Commissioner Anti-Corruption Commission Bangladesh, attending the event as a Special Guest, said, "There is no clear definition of corruption. Anything wrong that is against the law is corruption. When the citizens and the youth become sensitised and raise their voices against corruption, then we as a nation can be free from corruption." "
"Corruption can undermine years of progress in sustainable development. We need accountable, transparent institutions and empowered and active citizens to ensure proper sustainable development that leaves no one behind. We have seen the youth act as indomitable changemakers, and I am very excited to see them conquer this challenge as well," said Van Nguyen, Deputy Resident Representative UNDP Bangladesh.
Dr. Abdun Noor Tushar, former president of BDF said, "While the Youth Against Corruption campaign ended, the fight against corruption continues. The event reaffirmed the commitment of all present to unite against corruption for a peaceful, just, and equitable world."
Launched on 1 November 2021, the campaign aimed to sensitise young people about corruption, empower them with the knowledge to combat corruption, and ultimately create a young generation with self-efficacy and attitude to stand against corruption in Bangladesh.
In the final round of inter-college debate, Wills Little Flower School and College became the champion, while Adamjee Cantonment College was the runner-up. Meanwhile, in the Inter-university National Debate, Jahangirnagar University was the champion and Shahjalal University of Science and Technology (SUST) was the runner-up.
In a plenary session, Kazi Nabil Ahmed, MP; Member, Parliamentary Standing Committee of Foreign Affairs; Shameem Haider Patwary, MP, Member, Standing Committee on Ministry of Law, Justice and Parliamentary Affairs; Pir Fazlur Rahman, MP, Member Standing Committee, Ministry of Home Affairs shared their reflections on the dialogues held between them and the young people on youth against corruption.
Around two hundred youths from different colleges and universities, government officials, and officials of UNDP and BDF attended the event. The closing ceremony was moderated by Mahmudul Hasan, Youth Coordinator of UNDP Bangladesh.