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The Anti-Corruption Commission of Seychelles

On behalf of the Anti-Corruption Commission of Seychelles, allow me to welcome you all to this function as we formally open our doors to members of the public who have complaints about corruption. Our mandate is to receive complaints from any person or entity, investigate, detect and prevent practices linked to corruption in both the public and private sector. This is the first public event organised by the Commission, and I must say that I am truly happy and humbled that you have honoured our invitation. Your presence here clearly signifies the importance of the need to eradicate corruption from our society.Today we denounce corruption in all its forms. By standing here with us in the open as we take the first steps in fighting corruption, you make history in this country. A person of integrity never fears to face the world at any time. As the leadership of this beautiful nation, we should be exemplary and not only condemn but also practically avoid and fight corruption.

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Lobbying against Democracy

This essay seeks to excavate the anti-democratic propensities of corporate lobbying. It begins by considering the nature of lobbying and then attempts to comprehend the relationship between corporate lobbying and democracy in terms of Crouch’s theory of post-democracy. The political culture of post-democracy is blatantly corporatist and promotes the anti-democratic proclivities of the corporate lobby by providing ready opportunities for non-transparent lobbying. Cohen-Eliya & Hammer classify non- transparent lobbying as an index of the failure of the democratic process. The essay applies the typology developed by them to Germany as a case study of anti-democratic corporate lobbying in action. It concludes by considering regulation and criminalisation as two possible remedies for the anti-democratic transgressions of non-transparent corporate lobbying. The former is explored by way of an analysis of the regulatory regimes of Germany and the USA; the latter by considering non-transparent corporate lobbying as a homologue of the crime of corruption.

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Challenges of Corruption and Organised Crime in the Western Balkans

In September 2015, the United Nations General Assembly adopted the 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development at the Summit on Sustainable Development. The 2030 Agenda and, in particular, Goal 16 on Peace and Justice, expressed consensus, for the first time, that organised crime, corruption and other illicit activities were important components of the developmental process, and operated as impediments to the achievement of the accepted goals. The 2030 Agenda fully appreciates that peace cannot be secured without justice and development.

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The War against Corruption is a Lost Cause without Robust Measures to Repatriate Stolen Assets to Countries of Origin

The paper discusses the impediments inherent in using anti-corruption laws to repatriate stolen assets to the victim state. It examines both state laws and the international legal frameworks aimed at overcoming these obstacles. The assets in question are accrued by public officials from the proceeds of corruption, money laundering, tax avoidance and other forms of illicit financial transactions in countries where they have been hidden. While less developed countries are often the countries of origin, destination countries of stolen assets tend to be developed Western countries. There is ample evidence showing that the recovery and repatriation of stolen assets to countries of origin is more easily said than done, given the barriers they face. Victim states not only suffer a loss of revenue as a result of economic criminality, but they also incur huge expenses in attempting to recover criminal assets, without any guarantee that they will succeed in doing so.

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Is Life Imprisonment without Parole or Commutation an Effective Anti-Corruption Measure for China?

New legislation adopting a tough criminal stance on the crimes of corruption and bribery responds to the need for strengthening Chinese anti-corruption work. The ninth amendment to the Chinese Criminal Law Code, which adds life imprisonment without parole or commutation, has received broad support from all sectors of society. The aim of the amendment, as stated by the legislature, is to safeguard judicial fairness and prevent criminals convicted of the most serious corruption offences from having their prison sentences shortened through commutation. This stated legislative aim is not acceptable. Whether from the perspective of deterrence or alternative measures to the death penalty, the approach of adding life imprisonment without parole or commutation in order to punish the corrupt is not ideal.

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Judicial Corruption, Institutional Reform and the Electoral Process in Nigeria

Shortly after the collapse of the Berlin Wall and the demise of several African one-party regimes, leaders of a number of African countries began the process of reconstructing the postcolonial African state by embarking on policy and political reforms. This decision was informed by the fact that, since independence, many African countries have been wracked by political and economic crises that have prevented the state from pursuing the rapid growth and economic development needed to fight poverty and material deprivation on the continent. This study argues that while corruption has contributed largely to the development crises in post-independence Nigeria, the problem of judicial corruption is a major impediment to the attainment of sustainable electoral reform in Nigeria. The study substantiates this hypothesis by citing instances of corruption in the Election Petition Tribunals of the 2003 and 2007 general elections in Nigeria.

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Pecunia Non Olet: Dirty Money as Legal Fees

It is axiomatic that lawyers have to be paid for their services. Regrettably, lawyers who represent money launderers may be offered dirty money, that is, proceeds of crime as fee payments by their clients. This essay explores the question of such tainted legal fees in South Africa through an analysis of its anti-money laundering (AML) legislation. It then compares the South African position to the approaches taken in the USA and Canada. South African AML legislation criminalises tainted fees. The USA amended its AML legislation to decriminalise tainted fees. And tainted fees never have been criminalised in Canada. The South African approach threatens both the right of accused persons to legal representation and the right of lawyers to practise their profession. It is recommended that the South African AML statutes be amended to decriminalise tainted legal fees.

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Combating corruption through international investment treaty law

Corruption plays an important role in investment arbitration. Parties to arbitral proceedings make allegations of bribery with increasing frequency. However, the lack of unambiguous guidelines on how to treat such allegations arguably has contributed to a shortage of affirmative decisions, even where further evidence might have been available to the arbitral tribunal. This is problematic, as the inflow of illicit moneys through investment projects can severely undermine anti-corruption efforts in the host state. This paper investigates options for integrating the strong legal regime of investment arbitration — which brings together foreign investors and host states as principal actors in transnational corruption — further into the fight against corruption. It is based upon an analysis of investment treaties, investment arbitration awards, subject literature and expert interviews. It is submitted that states should press for explicit anti-corruption provisions in investment treaties.

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The problem of private-to-private corruption

Corruption has huge detrimental effects, and private-to-private corruption contributes hugely to this detriment. Its consequences match those of public corruption, particularly in the contemporary world, when private entities not only are becoming more influential but also increasingly are engaged in the dispensing of public functions. Hence, to give more muscle to the war against corruption and for it to bear some fruit, proper attention should be given to confronting corruption within the private sector. Criminalisation is one of the pivotal tools in this regard. This paper explicates the regulation of private-to-private corruption under key international anti-corruption instruments which are relevant in the African context. It also discusses the criminalisation of private sector corruption by the Statute of the African Court of Justice and Human and Peoples’ Rights.

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Dora Nkem Akunyili (1954-2014): A principled anti-corruption warrior

This paper argues that corruption remains one of the major social evils plaguing the Nigerian nation. The country faces also a range of other socio-economic and infrastructure problems which citizens complain about almost daily. However, the vice of corruption reigns supreme, jeopardising the very foundations of the state. Some ethicists argue that corruption has manifested itself as a universal phenomenon, one which stifles the economy and impedes Nigeria’s progress towards attainment of the Millennium Developmental Goals, let alone the present Millennium Sustainable Goals. Nigeria’s anti-corruption bodies seem incapable of stopping what many have described as the “Nigerian factor” or the “Nigerian way”. This article submits that, notwithstanding this depressing state of affairs, there is a glimmer of hope that public trust is redeemable, especially when having regard to the ethical values that marked the public life of Dora Nkem Akunyili, the erstwhile Nigerian academic and civil servant.

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Regulation of beneficial ownership in South Africa and Zimbabwe

Criminals despise transparency. Beneficial ownership transparency measures are aimed at ensuring that the structure of corporate vehicles is evident and that their real owners do not hide behind the corporate veil. South Africa and Zimbabwe have been struggling to prevent and combat money laundering, corruption and tax crimes. Competent authorities in both countries are starting to appreciate the importance of beneficial ownership transparency measures in the fight against economic crime. This paper examines whether South Africa and Zimbabwe have made progress in establishing effective legal frameworks on the beneficial ownership of legal persons and legal arrangements. It discusses the Financial Intelligence Centre Amendment Act 1 of 2017 which establishes beneficial ownership transparency measures for South Africa. It goes on to discuss the Zimbabwean situation regarding beneficial ownership and its regulation. Lastly, it makes certain recommendations concerning the beneficial ownership regimes of both countries.

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Book Notice: Confronting Corruption: Past Concerns, Present Challenges and Future Strategies

The literature on corruption and anti-corruption has mushroomed over the last decade or so. Of course, all research and writing on the problem of corruption and the fight against it are to be welcomed. Regrettably, however, with volume come fragmentation and specialisation and their concomitant quandaries. Indeed, any person wanting to understand the field would be hard-pressed to find a source or even a manageable bundle of sources which encompasses the crucial issues lucidly and logically.

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