Corruption Watch has been named one of the winners in the Google Impact Challenge South Africa, at an event held at Johannesburg, last night. The initiative, launched in May 2018, sought to find the most innovative non-profits and social enterprises using technology to solve societal problems.

Corruption Watch’s winning project has, together with three other entrants, been awarded a grant of $250 000, while the remaining eight finalists will each receive $125 000.

The organisation will develop an interactive online tool aimed at enhancing public participation and transparency in the South African Police Service (SAPS) called Bua Mzansi – Know Your Police Station. This project will enable communities to hold the police accountable. Its functionality will grant the public access to over 1 100 police stations throughout the country, and allow residents to rate the police stations based on their experiences as well as report incidents of corruption.

The project has a strong emphasis on public participation and community engagement. It highlights the importance of tackling societal issues on the ground by unleashing the power that communities have to demand service delivery.

David Lewis, the executive director of Corruption Watch, commented: “An active citizenry and effective law enforcement are the two key ingredients in tackling corruption. By enabling the citizenry to hold their police service accountable, this project brings these two critical elements together.”

Corruption Watch is looking forward to working with communities and with the SAPS in building trust between active citizens and an effective and fair police service, Lewis said. He added: “We are delighted to receive this award and humbled by the extraordinary quality of all the participants.”

The launch of the project will be announced in 2019.

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