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Domesticate anti-graft convention, AUABC tells members states

BUSINESS REPORTER

The African Union Advisory Board against Corruption (AUABC) has said member countries that ratified the continental convention to stem corruption should speed up the process of enacting local laws to buttress the anti-graft rule.

It is estimated that Africa loses over US$150bn annually to corruption.

The African Union Convention on Preventing and Combating Corruption (AUCPCC) marked 20 years Tuesday since it was adopted on July 11, 2003.

Forty-eight African countries, including Zimbabwe, have so far ratified the AUCPCC. Seven countries—Cape Verde, Djibouti, Equatorial Guinea, Eritrea, Eswatini, Somalia and South Sudan—are still to ratify the convention.

In a statement to mark the 20th anniversary of the AUCPCC, the AUABC called on State Parties that have ratified the Convention to speed up processes to enact legislations that will bring their countries into full compliance with the Convention as “a matter of urgency”.

“What largely remains, is the full domestication of all aspects or relevant articles in the Convention, by providing local legislation and policies that cover all the key articles of the Convention including criminalising activities such as illicit enrichment, diversion of state property, gift taking and having laws that cover Asset Declaration, Witness Protection, Anti-Money Laundering, Bribery, Political Party Funding and more,” the AUABC said as it pledged its support to “extending the necessary technical assistance where required to make this happen in the best interest of the African continent”.

It appealed to African governments to display “stronger political resolve” and to allocate adequate funding to bolster the effectiveness of their various national anticorruption agencies.

“We also encourage stakeholders within the continental and national space to seek greater collaboration and use partnership frameworks to expand their scope of outreach and impact, aligning with the 20th year celebration theme of “AUCPCC, 20 Years After: Achievements and Prospects,” the AUABC said.

The fight against corruption on the continent is not a stroll in the park.

AUABC Secretariat executive secretary Charity Nchimunya (pictured) recently told Business Times that stakeholders in the prevention and combating of corruption should not to slacken but remain resilient and join forces as “we strive to have a corruption free continent”.

“The cause is daunting but with unity of purpose, the objective is attainable. Fighting corruption has to be a personal conviction otherwise one is bound to throw in the towel,” Nchimunya said.

 


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