Corruption has become a plague, wreaking havoc across the world.

According to the United Nations, UN one trillion dollars are paid in bribes annually, with another 2.6 trillion stolen, due to corruption.

The UN Secretary-General, Antonio Guterres, while counting the costs of corruption, said values and economic development were under assault, as trillions of dollars were lost.

He said every year, trillions of dollars – equivalent to more than 5% of global Gross Domestic Product – are paid in bribes or stolen through corruption.

Guterres deemed corruption “an assault on the values of the United Nations,” highlighting the pervasive crime.

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He said corruption “robs societies of schools, hospitals and other vital services, drives away foreign investment and strips nations of their natural resources”.

The United Nations is fighting the global scourge, which affects both rich and poor countries, through initiatives like the global campaign launched jointly by the UN Development Programme and the UN Office on Drugs and Crime.

Guterres called the Convention a “primary tool” for advancing the fight, and highlighted the positive outcomes made possible through its implementation.

“Through the Convention’s peer review mechanism, we can work together to build a foundation of trust and accountability,” the UN chief said.

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