Anti-corruption conference underway in Nairobi

A two day conference on anti-corruption kicked off in Nairobi today, with key speakers urging businesses to be vocal in the fight against corruption.

The conference organised by Safaricom, the United Nations Global Compact and the Global Compact Network Kenya aims to address the role of the private sector in the fight against corruption and implementing the recently adopted Sustainable Development Goals.

Speaking during the opening ceremony, President Uhuru Kenyatta noted that corruption is an evil that must be fought by all in the public, private and NGO sectors.

“We must all say “no” to corruption. We must not allow our people to be denied their basic rights due to corruption. I urge all of us even as private citizens to join in this war and together we shall eliminate this vice,” he said.

The conference is in line with the United Nations Global Compact 10th principle against corruption which states that businesses should work against corruption in all its forms including extortion and bribery.

The UN Global Compact is a strategic policy initiative for businesses that are committed to aligning their operations and strategies with ten universally accepted principles in the areas of human rights, labour, environment and anti-corruption.

Safaricom CEO Bob Collymore, who is also a board member of the United Nations Global Compact, noted that corruption is a major obstacle to sustainable economic, political and social development.

“Corruption undermines fair competition, distorts development priorities and impedes long term foreign and domestic investment. But if we are to put the government to task to promote anti-corruption measures and establish systems of good governance, the private sector too must lead by example. We must not allow ourselves to enable unethical behaviour,” Collymore said.

The conference also addressed the role of whistle blowers in the fight against corruption.

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