Africa's corruption hotspots named and shamed

November 5, 2015, 4:58am

By Business Day Live, photo: Thinkstock

South Africa is one of eight countries named as the worst in Africa for corruption.

ENSafrica found in a survey that incidents of bribery had increased‚ but so had general awareness of antibribery compliance among African organisations.

Corruption hot spots are Angola‚ the Democratic Republic of Congo‚ Ghana‚ Kenya‚ Mozambique‚ Nigeria‚ SA and Uganda.

ENSafrica said 24% of organisations had experienced an incident of bribery or corruption in the past 24 months‚ an increase of 4% since 2013‚ with 5% experiencing five or more incidents within the past 24 months.

Just more than 90% of organisations surveyed have a policy prohibiting bribes‚ 52% have an established antibribery compliance programme and 43% have conducted a detailed antibribery risk assessment of their bribery risks

A total of 88 organisations across Africa‚ including in Mauritius‚ participated in the survey. The survey was designed to gauge perceptions regarding an organisation’s anticorruption compliance with local and global requirements and to see how these processes compared with generally accepted anticorruption compliance best practice.

Other key findings included:

• 68% of those surveyed believed that third-party business partners posed the greatest source of bribery risk to their organisations;

• Only 36% of organisations surveyed were confident that they had proportionate procedures to mitigate bribery risks or believed they were well prepared to respond to the threat of an antibribery regulatory investigation;

• 62% of organisations now conducted due diligence screening on third parties‚ an increase of 22% from 2013; and

• 40% of organisations had a dedicated antibribery training programme for their employees and 15% provided antibribery training to their business partners.

"Having an effective anticorruption programme is more important for companies today than ever before. Many companies are now recognising the potential reputational harm‚ economic costs‚ fines‚ penalties and potential criminal prosecution that bribery and corruption pose to their business‚" ENSafrica said in a statement on the survey.

South African authorities were commended for having introduced onerous anticorruption requirements under the Companies Act and Prevention and Combating of Corrupt Activities Act, which impose strict reporting requirements on those holding positions of authority.

"Fewer organisations feel they are highly exposed to bribery in Africa (17% as opposed to 50% in 2013)‚ which may be attributed to organisations embracing the challenges of antibribery compliance and starting to build workable compliance programmes that mitigate bribery risks‚" the company said.

Companies with top-level commitment reported fewer incidents of bribery as opposed to those without‚ it added.

RDM News Wire