The Chairman of Egypt’s Administrative Surveillance Authority Sherif Saif Eddin conveyed the thanks and gratitude of President Abdel-Fattah El-Sisi to the guests of the first African Anti-Corruption Forum (AACF) Forum on Thursday.
During the closing session of the two-day AACF in Egypt’s Sharm El-Sheikh, Minister Saif Eddin said that corruption is the greatest enemy of the peoples of the African continent.
“Corruption represents a huge challenge to the efforts of democratization and stability, building strong states capable of making choices and holding responsible those involved in hindering their progress,” he said.
“During the AACF’s sessions, we listened to many different points of view, and witnessed serious discussions that aimed to reach decisive mechanisms to confront corruption and eliminate it. Everyone presented their vision and benefited from one another,” he said.
At the end of his speech, the chairman of the Administrative Surveillance Authority listed the ten recommendations from the closing session of the AACF:
– To prepare an integrated strategic plan to combat and prevent corruption on the African continent, which will include the fields of education, scientific research, media, the judiciary and technical control, and promote economic and human development, through the formation of a joint committee of the relevant agencies to prepare and follow up on the national strategies of African countries in this regard.
– To consolidate efforts to develop an African indicator for measuring corruption, that corresponds to the African context and reflects its specifications, bearing in mind the individual differences between African countries.
– To launch a continental platform based on national focal points in charge of following up on developments in corruption cases and the outcomes of the anti-corruption efforts; and also following up on the commitments of states who are signatory to the United Nations Convention against Corruption and the 2003 African Union Convention on Preventing and Combating Corruption, with regard to anti-corruption measures and procedures adopted by them, pursuant to their respective legal systems and constitutional principles, with the aim of limiting the phenomenon of corruption, provided that all parties convene on an annual basis in order to declare concluded outcomes and recommendations.
– To design a secure electronic mechanism for instant exchange of intelligence on crimes of corruption, money laundering and funding terrorism among states with common interests, while expanding mobilisation efforts of African anti-corruption authorities to raise public awareness and encourage them to report all forms of corruption.
– To establish a legal mechanism for combating corruption among African states as to the recovery of funds lost due to corruption crimes, in the form of a protocol annexed to the African Union Convention on Preventing and Combating Corruption, provided that respective decisions resulting from such a mechanism be binding on all states which are parties to the convention.
– To constantly review anti-corruption mechanisms, and develop and upgrade them in conformity with the specific context of respective states, while stressing common goals of African states to achieve strict transparency, provided that these proceedings will take place in the annual assembly of the Association of African Anti-Corruption Authorities (AAACA).
– To promote cooperation with international partners to make accessible all funding and technical potentials for combating corruption, in order to realise common interests.
– To expand the conclusion of memoranda of understanding and cooperation protocols between the National Academy for Combating Corruption in Egypt, training centres, and African control authorities, for the purpose of training and developing qualified African cadres in the realm of combating and preventing corruption whilst promoting values of integrity and transparency.
– To study developing a regular mechanism for convening the AACF on a regular basis, and sharing the status of implementing respective recommendations issued by the forum sessions regularly.
– To develop the capacities of the entities concerned with combating corruption to identify the modern methods used to launder the monies gained from corruption crimes, while adopting strict measures to address the reasons for Africa’s weaknesses with regard to reclaiming smuggled assets, with the aim of locating, seizing and reclaiming the smuggled assets.
President Abdel-Fattah El-Sisi inaugurated on the AACF on Wednesday; more than 200 senior officials from 48 African countries and nine international organisations attended the conference.
The forum’s stated aim was to encourage African countries to adopt policies, program and work plans that contribute to the eradication of corruption in the continent.
The forum also aimed, according to the opening speeches given by various representatives of African anti-corruption bodies, to establish a shared knowledge base between different regions of the continent on the risks of corruption and its severe negative effect on development.
Saudi Arabia, the UAE, Jordan and Kuwait were guests of honour at the forum.
The AACF was organised by Egypt’s Administrative Surveillance Authority in cooperation with the justice, foreign affairs and interior ministries, the Central Auditing Organisation, the Public Prosecution office, the anti-money laundering unit and the Illegal Gains Authority.
Prime Minister Moustafa Madbouly, Speaker of the House of Representatives Ali Abdel-Aal, Minister of Defence Mohamed Zaki, Minister of Investment and International Cooperation Sahar Nasr, and Minister of Planning Hala El-Saeed attended the forum, among other top state officials.