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Africa loses $50bn to corruption annually – APNAC

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The Member of Parliament for Wa West in the Upper West Region who doubles as a member of the African Parliamentarian Network Against Corruption (APNAC), Peter Toobu is worried about the extent to which Ghana and the entire African continent losses billions of cedis annually to corruption.

The MP could not fathom how the country has its highest population being Christians and Muslims yet people still loot the country’s resources for their own parochial interests.

According to the Organized Crime and Corruption Reporting Project, Ghana lost over USS 3 billion to corruption in 2019, a figure that is no different from the Auditor-General report on the corruption index in the country.

Recently, the African Parliamentarians Network Against Corruption (APNAC) made a statement on the floor of Parliament by the MP for Ho West and Chairman of APNAC, Ghana Chapter, Emmanuel Kwasi Bedzrah on how African countries misappropriated Covid-19 funds.

It was on the occasion of the Africa Anti-corruption Day.

“Mr. Speaker, it is an irrefutable fact that the COVID-19 pandemic outbreak has brought to the fore, corruption challenges across countries in the world and in particular, Africa. It is significant to state that corruption related to COVID-19 has been reported in a number of African countries. For instance, in Cameroon, a 2021 audit revealed the misuse of about US$333 million meant for the pandemic response in 2020. In South Africa, there were issues of irregular contracts to the tune of US$10 million. In Malawi, the government revealed that some of its officials colluded with the private sector to misappropriate US$1.3 million of COVID-19 funds. The Kenya Medical Supplies Authority allegedly pilfered about US$400 million meant to buy medical equipment.

Also, Mr. Speaker, in the case of Nigeria, the Federal Ministry of Health allegedly bought 1,808 face masks for US$96,000. A similar situation was reported in Uganda, where four top officials were arrested for allegedly overpricing COVID-19 food relief items leading to a loss of US$528,000.”

“Mr. Speaker, as reported by the High Level Panel on Illicit Financial Flows from Africa, the continent loses more than US$50 billion annually through illicit financial outflows. It is significant to state that for decades now, Africa has been continuously losing valuable assets through illicit outflows of not only her natural resources, but also treasured artifacts of African societies, and various proceeds of crime. These outflows directly impact the quality of life on the continent.”

Speaking on A1 Radio’s Day Break Upper East Show, Mr. Toobu described corruption as the worst canker that is eating into the development prospects of Ghana and Africa as a whole

“Corruption can wipe out an entire group of people that is why I am saying corruption is more dangerous than robbery; it is more dangerous than murder. We need to, as a continent, rise and say if we have any future at all, in the area of development, the only hydra-headed war we need to fight with all our energy is corruption.”

“Africa is losing over $50 billion through corruption. If Ghana is losing say, $1billion through corruption, when I sit in Parliament and a loan of $100 million, a loan of $75 million is brought for Parliamentarians to pass and approve for government to go and get that loan, and you look at the fact that the pot itself they are coming to put it in is leaking, then you ask yourself if you have a very normal person fetching water with a perforated basket, sometimes you ask, are you really normal?”

Source: A1radioonline.com|101.1MHz|Mark Kwasi Ahumah Smith|Ghana

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