By: Our Correspondent
ISLAMABAD: To mark the International Anti-Corruption Day, “Anti-Corruption Awareness” walks were organized across the country. The aim of the awareness walks was to highlight the ramifications of corrupt practices and corruption in Pakistan.
The walk was part of a series of “Anti-Corruption Awareness” walks arranged by the Sustainable Social Development Organization (SSDO) across the country. People from an array of diverse backgrounds such as civil society organizations, members from the transgender community, journalists, lawyers, public policy professionals, students, activists and from the informal sector participated in the walks.
The Executive Director of SSDO, Syed Kausar Abbas, stated, “The motive of organizing this walk was to give the common citizens of Pakistan visibility in public spaces to highlight their opinions. It is equally imperative for civil society organizations, youth groups and all other stakeholders to also acknowledge and organize events that promote transparency and accountability. I believe that even more events like this are necessary in the future to encourage dialogue and promote awareness. ”
The walks united common citizens on a single platform where they could collectively voice their opinion and let their thoughts be heard by the mainstream media, and the general public. Many participants carried placards articulating messages against corruption, bringing to attention the utter destruction corruption brings to society, with its far-reaching effects that destroy institutions, legal processes and public trust. Throughout Pakistan, it was a very welcoming sight to see women and youth take center stage and enthusiastically participate in this event. Moreover, the participants raised slogans against corruption such as “Corruption free is the way to be” and “Corruption aik lanat hai [Corruption is a curse]”, to express the disdain they felt at the intense permeation of corruption into many of Pakistan’s institutions and decision-making bodies, hampering development and suppressing common citizens.
Numerous participants expressed their gratitude to SSDO for organizing such an event where people from all walks of life could gather together to raise their voices against the menace of corruption and allow them a platform to verbalize their thoughts. Resultantly, there were calls for similar events to be arranged in the future, so that citizens could once again gather together and provide a collaborative and united front to demonstrate their power in numbers and initiate public policy dialogue.