KAMPALA – Experts have expressed the dire need for the country to get back on the drawing board to have integrity embedded in the general upbringing of the new generation.
Experts argue that unlike their old counterparts, the young generation have big egos in life like amassing wealth at a tender age which makes them divert from the set values and integrity
The experts made the call at the National Citizen Integrity Awards 2020 that were organised by Action aid and Transparency International at Royal Suites Hotel in Bugoloobi.
The awards that were held under the theme dubbed ‘Promoting Social Accountability through Active Citizenry’ seek to award people spearheading the fight against corruption across Uganda.
Mr Robinson Oduka from the Directorate of Ethics and Integrity (DEI) explained that in most cases the citizens’ actions are responsive to how their leaders behave and if they have to look at how integrity is important, leadership comes to mind and trust is what is needed.
He explains that the problem we are facing now as a country aside from corruption is the fact that Integrity is becoming something understood differently in different age brackets.
“Our primary function as the Directorate of Ethics and Integrity is to coordinate roles in fighting against corruption and rebuilding the moral values and principles. The directorate is at developing and reviewing anti-corruption framework and policies so that implementers can have a good clearing ground,” he shared.
Oduka further stressed the need to integrate the culture of integrity in the young generation.
“It is about time we invest in the moral infrastructure of this generation. I believe that in most cases, the citizens’ actions are based on how the leaders treat them. Citizens respond to their leaders’ behaviours that is why we have to look at integrity on the leaders as well.”
To him, people at times mix public image and reputation and there are many leaders that are after public image.
According to Mr Godfrey Akiiki Kuruhira, the Chief Administrative Officer of Wakise District, as civil service, they focus a lot on how workers join the service.
He says they look at whether the people hired fit the jobs designated for them (the job) or they get them without any qualifications for the job.
“The institution has to have mission, vision and goals to achieve. That is why we are enforcing results in the local civil service because we believe Integrity is inbuilt that is why you see increasing demand for higher pay in some offices that have always been at a lower pay,” he shared
He added that every year they have a performer of the year and run a reward and sanction system putting out those who do not match up with integrity and those that serve above self.
Ms Marion Tukahurira, the CAO of Kyankwanzi District however believes that the country lost integrity in the curriculum, grooming and the entire chain of upbringing of this generation but with the governance system and the sensitisation, we are slowly getting back on track.
“Sometimes we have lost the mentoring of our children because we are striving for career growth. We have changed our attitude towards shaping integrity.”
Mr Lomayang Joseph, the District Chairperson of Napak said parents have not done their best in shaping the integrity of the children.
“We have also failed as the government. I believe it is high time we take this head on. We need collective responsibility and my appeal is let all of us rise up as Ugandans and fight the vice to see the country get out of it.”