Corruption threatens social stability, security, fairness and justice. Corruption impedes sustainable development, and undermines the rule of law, says Public Service and Administration Deputy Minister, Dr Chana Pilane-Majake.
Speaking at the BRICS Anti-Corruption Ministerial meeting, the Deputy Minister said: “In recognising the serious threat posed by corruption, BRICS Anti-Corruption Working Group has strengthened multilateral coordination, and cooperation.
“Under the leadership of the rotating presidencies as currently lead by China, mutual trust among member countries has been enhanced. Shared knowledge and experience with various International Organisations helped fast track progress. The deliverables of the past BRICS leaders’ summits reflected a common vision of intensifying a fight against corruption.”
Deputy Minister Pilane- Majake further said corruption undermines democracy and the rule of law, leads to violations of human rights, distorts markets, erodes the quality of life, and allows organized crime, terrorism, and other threats to human security to flourish.
The United Nations Convention against Corruption (UNCAC) describes corruption as an insidious plague that has a wide range of corrosive effects on societies. She described the gathering as one of the highest level of commitment as BRICS Countries to extend assistance to each other in the prevention and combating of corruption.
“BRICS proposes measures to be implemented by States parties to prevent and combat corruption through its mandatory and non-mandatory provisions. The Implementation Review process by States parties must be strengthened to identify challenges in implementation and good practices.
“South Africa has now completed its second cycle implementation review in 2020. I encourage the BRICS Anti-Corruption Working Group to use the implementation review reports as a foundation to design its action plan in the fight against corruption,” she said.
At the 14th BRICS Leader’s Summit, leaders reaffirmed their commitment to strengthening international cooperation against corruption.
The Deputy Minister said the BRICS leaders further declared that while respecting the legal systems of respective countries that BRICS countries should be committed to strengthening cooperation on issues related to anti-corruption.
“BRICS countries must strengthen law enforcement and mutual legal assistance in civil and administrative matters, asset recovery and Denial of Safe Haven to Corruption. Corruption generates vast amounts of illicit proceeds, creates an environment that fosters other crimes, large-scale tax evasion, transactional organised crime, human and drug trafficking and to a large extent undermines peace.
“BRICS states parties, have committed to taking decisive, coordinated, and effective action against these threats, in line with existing global commitments on illicit financial flows,” she said.
South Africa has actively engaged in the development and adoption of BRICS Anti-Corruption ministerial communique that will pave the way to further efforts by BRICS countries in the global fight against corruption. In 2020, South Africa as guided by the country National Development Plan vision 2030, adopted the National Anti-Corruption Strategy that serves as a blueprint to tackle corruption.
The focus of this National Anti-Corruption Strategy is on corruption in both the public and private sectors. South Africa also welcomes the adoption of the BRICS Anti-Corruption agenda and framework and pledges full commitment and cooperation in implementation of this agenda and framework.