A professor coerces his female student to have sex with him. He will give her an A in her class.
At today’s workshop, Gender Inequality, Women’s Security, and the Millennium Development Goals: How far is Corruption a Hindrance, the panelists warned that if we don’t consider the gendered dynamics in our fight against corruption, eventually the success of our fight will be hollow.
When we think about corruption, we associate it with bribes, with governments, with greedy officials and with the misuse of power. It’s rare to relate corruption to slave labor, to human trafficking, to forced prostitution or even to illicit abortion.
Lilian Ekeanyanwu, Head of the Technical Unit on the Governance and Anti-Corruption Reforms, TUGAR, Nigeria, speaking at the panel noted that in addressing corruption, we need to ensure the inclusion of “body” corruption”. Ekwanyanwu said, “We have to expand the review of frameworks to capture country policies and reports on these issues in order to bring them to the global arena.”
Furthermore, more women need to be included in decision-making bodies because they are widely underrepresented. As Cecilia Blondet from Transparency International Peru and Surdarshan Kunda, Gender and Governance Specialist at UNIFEM both reminded the audience that since women and men inhabit our world, both deserve the right of governing it.
Maybe, their increased participation and voice will check acts of corruption in our societies. Maybe, that female student coerced by her professor will speak against her professor because our society now recognizes the professor’s actions as corrupt.