The Acting Permanent Secretary in the Ministry of Environment Wildlife and Tourism, Edmond Moabi, says the Directorate on Corruption and Economic Crime does not get adequate support from government departments and ministries.
Speaking at the launch of the ministry’s corporate services corruption prevention committee last week, Moabi said Botswana is especially prone to corruption because it does not have a national anti-corruption strategy.
“DCEC is the only establishment that is mandated to fight corruption. Unfortunately, it does not get adequate support from ministries and the private sector,” he said.
He added that the lack of support creates a vacuum between DCEC and other stakeholders. It is against this background that DCEC decided to introduce corruption prevention committees to fill the vacuum.
The committees were formed after it became apparent that corruption is a national problem, which warrants everybody’s participation.
The corruption prevention committees are a relatively new initiative that was introduced after it emerged that the old methods of using presentations and seminars to fight corruption were ineffective.
“It came to the attention of DCEC that presentations and seminars did not bear the desired results. It is based on this revelation that DCEC sent two of its employees to Kenya on a benchmarking mission to learn about corruption prevention committees,” he said.
In developing countries like Botswana corruption can have adverse effects as it tends to make poor people even poorer. This it does by denying them their rightful share of economic resources, as they cannot afford to pay more or influence corrupt authorities.
“Corruption puts basic public services beyond the reach of those who cannot afford to pay bribes. It creates discrimination between the different groups in society, promotes inequality and injustice, and discourages foreign investment,” said Moabi.
He added that corruption is a major obstacle to successful social and economic development and can also affect political stability.