On 10 October 2018, the mayor of Straseni, Valentina Casian, presented her municipality’s work on promoting integrity and anticorruption at local level at the UNDP side event “Future of cities: transparent and innovative urban development”. The panel discussion took place in the framework of the European Week of Regions and Cities.
Straseni municipality has piloted “island of integrity” approach of UNDP. The methodology, created by Ana Vasilache and Ronald MacLean Abaroa, replicated Abaroa’s successful anti-corruption campaign as Mayor of La Paz, Bolivia. It 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.
In 2017, Straseni adopted a strategic plan, that is focused on changing corrupt organizational systems. The document was developed in a participatory manner and involved managers and staff, leaders and outside stakeholders, in analyzing the vulnerability to corruption and in elaborating the solutions. The process was facilitated by UNDP Moldova within the framework of a regional initiative supported by the Government of Romania.
The anti-corruption strategic plan covers four areas most vulnerable to corruption:
- Public procurement
- Public property
- Urban development
- Sanitation public service
Those areas were identified by consultation, 300 women and men participating in a survey conducted by the local administration with UNDP support.
The anti-corruption strategic plan focuses on practical solutions to release these sectors of the corruption plague. So far, the municipality managed to:
- Remove bureaucratic barriers within the city hall;
- Conduct small value procurement through the new national electronic system E-procurement;
- Conduct a raising awareness campaign to promote the newly-development Urbanistic Plan and to encourage reporting of illegal or unauthorized constructions;
- Initiate the modernization of the municipal service enterprise, which was identified by the citizens as one of the most vulnerable for corruption actions area.
“My motto is that the most important office is the citizen’s office. The citizen's involvement depends first and foremost on the ability of the mayor to persuade them to get involved, to motivate them, to be honest is the communication with citizens,” noted Valentina Casian, mayor of Straseni, who is at its second mandate.
Straseni pilot was part of a regional initiative, meant to promote the implementation of an innovative and practical anti-corruption methodology at the local level. This anti-corruption methodology has already been applied in more than 10 Southeastern European countries and 20 local governments and gained international recognition through an UN Public Service Award.