The Anti-Corruption Trust of Southern Africa (ACT-SA) is happy with the progress made by SADC Member States vis-à-vis the signature and ratification of the UN Convention against Corruption (UNCAC), the AU Convention on Preventing and Combating Corruption (AUCPCC) and the SADC Protocol against Corruption (SPAC). The findings of a study commissioned by ACT-SA clearly illuminates that SADC Member States have made great strides in signing and ratifying anti-corruption treaties.
Mr. Obert Chinhamo, the ACT-SA Director praised the SADC Member States but urged them to take steps to domesticate these instruments.
“I am happy with the signature and ratification progress but this is not enough. This should not be misconstrued as an end in themselves considering the increasing cases of corruption being witnessed in the region. Hence, ACT-SA makes a strong case that implementation should begin were ratification and signing end. We still however, argue that those countries still lagging behind should sign and ratify these key instruments to promote the level of cooperation required in the fight against corruption.” he says
The report by ACT-SA has revealed that Comoros, Madagascar and Seychelles have not ratified the SADC Protocol against Corruption (SPAC) whilst the Democratic Republic of Congo (DRC) and Eswatini have not ratified the AU Convention on Preventing and Combating Corruption (AUCPCC).
ACT-SA has also revealed that all the 16 SADC Member States ratified the United Nations Convention against Corruption (UNCAC), thereby showing that it is the most favoured of the three anti-corruption instruments.
Mr Munyaradzi Bidi, the Programmes Advisor of ACT-SA pointed out that corruption remains a huge obstacle to development and as such should be on the list of priorities of any state.
“The 2019 Corruption Perceptions Index (CPI) was more telling in revealing the endemic nature of corruption in Sub-Saharan Africa. Taking into consideration the deleterious effects of corruption on development, rule of law, human rights, security and the stability of states and that of the sub-region, fighting corruption should be on the list of the priorities of any State in Southern Africa. I urge full domestication of these anti-corruption instruments,” he adds
ACT-SA made a number of recommendations to the Governments of Comoros, Madagascar, Seychelles, the Democratic Republic of Congo and Eswatini, which are still lagging behind in terms of the ratification of the SADC Protocol against Corruption (SPAC) and the AU Convention on Preventing and Combating Corruption (AUCPCC).
- The Government of Comoros as a new member of the SADC and the Government of Madagscar are recommended to both sign and ratify the SADC Protocol against Corruption;
- The Government of Seychelles is recommended to ratify the SADC Protocol against Corruption;
- The Government of the Democratic Republic of Congo is recommended to ratify the AU Convention on Preventing and Combating Corruption;
- The Government of the Eswatini is recommended to ratify the AU Convention on Preventing and Combating Corruption;
- All SADC Member States are urged to domesticate these anti-corruption instruments that they have signed and ratified to give them the full force of the law.
- In addition all SADC Member States are recommended to sign the UNCAC Transparency Pledge which involves a commitment of governments to simple transparency and participation steps in the review of the UNCAC. The principles of the Transparency Pledge make the review process more effective and will help to ensure greater transparency and openness.
Source: Anti-Corruption Trust of Southern Africa (ACT-Southern Africa)