Kutaisi becomes first Georgian city to introduce local anti-corruption strategy and action plan, adopted on 27 February 2018. The strategy is based on an innovative methodology Islands of Integrity, implemented in the cities around the Black Sea region with the support of the United Nations Development Programme (UNDP).
Mayor of Kutaisi, Giorgi Tchigvaria, stressed that this innovative methodology will help the municipality prevent and fully eradicate local corruption.
“We looked closely at all potential threats and loopholes in the system, with the special focus on the field most vulnerable to corruption – budgeting, staff recruitment and procurement,” – the Mayor said.
Islands of Integrity is a practical tool for public leaders and managers to identify and change public policies and organizational systems prone to corruption through a strategic and participatory process. Since 2015, UNDP Istanbul Regional Hub have been working to train local civil servants, exchange anti-corruption practices and implement the methodology in more than 30 cities across Eastern and Central Europe and Turkey.
“UNDP will continue to further support Kutaisi Municipality with technical expertise and regional knowledge-sharing to translate the anti-corruption strategy into specific actions. The successful implementation of the methodology in the Kutaisi Municipality will serve as an example to other cities in Georgia and the region,” – Maia Bibileishvili, UNDP Project Coordinator, noted.
As a pilot project, the progress of the anti-corruption initiative in Kutaisi will be closely followed by good governance practitioners across the region, supporting their efforts to replicate the Islands of Integrity methodology further.