White Collar Crime Brief – 20/03/2013

20 March 2013|In White Collar Briefs

In this issue:

  • South Africa: Lawyers to face the courts for dubious payments received
  • Africa: Corruption in the African water sector

South Africa: Lawyers to face the courts for dubious payments received

A total of 25 people are to go on trial in the Western Cape High Court over their alleged roles in a perlemoen syndicate including an attorney for the accused, Anthony Broadway (“Broadway”).

Broadway allegedly received cash payments from his clients which were possibly from the proceeds of crime. In reaction, attorney Henry van Niekerk (“van Niekerk”) requested a declaratory order to ensure that he and the other lawyers representing the accused would not face the same accusation from the state as Broadway for accepting cash payments from their clients, the accused.

Van Niekerk told the court that “we [the accused attorneys] all now run the risk of being arrested for taking financial instructions” and “it means no accused can confidently approach an attorney, and no attorney can confidently represent him, because [the attorney] could end up being an accused as well”.

Africa: Corruption in the African water sector

The World Health Organization estimates the there are approximately 3 million deaths from water-borne diseases annually due to people receiving unsanitary drinking water and, according to the World Bank, 20 to 40 percent of public finances worldwide meant for development of the water sector are lost due to corruption.

A recent report in Kenya revealed high levels of corruption among government officials, water vendors and farm owners result in diverted water supply lines, misappropriated funds, and failure to implement laws. Similar reports have come to light in Tanzania, Mali and Mozambique.

Bethlehem Mengistu, the regional advocacy manager of Water Aid said that "The impact of corruption on the water sector is manifested by lack of sustainable delivery, inequitable investment and targeting of resources, and limited participation of affected communities in developmental processes" and that "the key drivers [of corruption] are limitations of participation, transparency and accountability. It is usually the case that the details of sector resourcing is confined, there is limited participation of right holders in critical issues of development, and the checks and balances to key decision-making roles are weak".

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