South Africa’s Deputy Minister of Public Service and Administration, Dr Chana Pilane-Majake, pledged at a UN conference in Egypt last week that the country would exhaust all means to fight corruption.
The ninth session of the conference of the states parties to the UN convention against corruption – a five-day event – was attended by more than 2 000 representatives from 152 nations in person or virtually. It concluded on Friday.
South Africa, said Pilane-Majake, was committed to combatting corruption in accordance with the UN convention against crime and recently completed its review of the chapter on the prevention and recovery of assets.
She said the country had published its second cycle of the implementation review report following the recommendations of the first one, adding that this action was consistent with the principles of openness, transparency and inclusion.
The South African anti-corruption strategy, said Pilane-Majake, had been adopted in November last year and “prioritised prevention measures, while providing a framework and an action plan for the country as a whole”.
Specifically, she said, the objective of the strategy was to create a society where the processes of government administration and procurement were enforced. The public also needed to be educated about corruption and empowered to combat it.
She said it was a priority to ensure that whistleblowers received sufficient protection and that public officials were held accountable. The business sector also had to be held accountable for corruption. South Africa had also declared zero tolerance for corruption.
“We established the fusion centre to provide a framework for law enforcement agencies to collaborate in the detection of fraud and a special tribunal was established to expedite finalising corruption.”
She added that deterrents which had been instituted by South Africa’s Special Investigating Unit “substantially increased the country’s ability to recover and retain billions of rands stolen from public funds”.