Private sector calls for increased effort in fight against corruption


Private sector calls for increased effort in fight against corruption
From right, Dr Julius Kipng’etich - Regional CEO - Jubilee Holdings, Bill Lay – Former CEO, CMC Holdings, Patrick Obath – Chairman, Adrian Kenya. PHOTO | COURTESY

In Summary

  • Speaking during a two-day conference in Nairobi, the business leaders - led by the Kenya Private Alliance and the National Chamber of Commerce - committed to work with government agencies to weed out corruption that has been blamed for lack of sustainability of private enterprises in the country.

Business Managers and entrepreneurs in the country have called for more concerted efforts in the war against corruption, further vowing to enhance their commitment in tackling the vice.

Speaking during a two-day conference in Nairobi, the business leaders – led by the Kenya Private Alliance and the National Chamber of Commerce – committed to work with government agencies to weed out corruption that has been blamed for lack of sustainability of private enterprises in the country.

“Corruption is a threat to the growth of businesses and the private sector is therefore committed to assisting governments root out graft through legislation and public awareness on the vice,” said Lee Karuri, the Chair of Kenya Private Sector Alliance (KEPSA) Foundation.

They however challenged the government to do more in the war that has focused more on the public sector.

“In Kenya, government agencies have largely driven the fight against corruption while the private sector seems to remain silent despite the losses that the sector is experiencing due to graft,” said Fatma El Maawy, the event host & CEO of local training firm Milestone Resources.

“Corruption has stifled growth of our small and medium-sized enterprises that provide jobs to our youth, so we need to do something very fast.”

The International Monetary Fund (IMF) estimates that $1 trillion (Ksh.100 trillion) per year is lost to corruption worldwide.

In a Corruption Risk Mapping (CRM) and Anti-Bribery Compliance Assessment conducted in November 2018 in the Private Sector by KEPSA and CIPE that mapped out 1200 private businesses, 85% of respondents said there was corruption in various forms in private sector business operations across Kenya.

“Corruption has made Kenya the most unequal country; which has 10,000 high net worth individuals in a population of 51 million, while 55% of Kenyans in Nairobi live in slums. We cannot have a stable environment with that level of inequality,” added Mr. Karuri.

“Corruption provides an environment for terrorism to thrive. All countries in the TI index have high levels of terrorism. We need to create a country that is ethical for the next generation, which is achievable if only we will address the cancer of corruption,”

The forum, supported by the Centre for International Private Enterprise (CIPE), brought together representatives from different African Countries with Speakers from across the globe aimed to see rising standards of business practice for efficiency to drive cross-border trade, business growth, economic stabilities, and sustainability of.

Other speakers during the conference included Emily Kamau (Deputy Director of Public Prosecutions) and Richard Ngatia (President, KNCCI).

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