Romania’s lesson in public integrity

Adapted from an article published in The Christian Science Monitor, February 18, 2017.

Earlier this year, tens of thousands of people in Romania held almost daily protests against corruption in many cities. On weekends, the rallies were even larger. At night, masses of people held up their illuminated mobile phones, a signal of hope that led the protests to be dubbed the “revolution of light.”

This persistent and peaceful outcry for honest governance began after the ruling party tried to roll back anticorruption efforts that have led to thousands of officials being put on trial since 2013. People were shocked at how easily their progress in suppressing corruption could be eroded by politicians. The protests did eventually force lawmakers to back down. But discontent continues.

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