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40% of Africa’s annual GDP lost to corruption say experts


August 20, 2010 (NAIROBI) - Nearly 40 percent of Africa’s Gross Domestic Product (GDP) is lost annually in corruption related practices, according to the Director of Kenya Anti-Corruption Commission (KACC) Professor. PLO Lumumba.

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Professor Lumumba - Director of Kenya Anti-Corruption Commission

While making a keynote address conference on corruption civil society perspective of anti-corruption mechanisms in East Africa, Prof. Lumumba said that Africa remained poor despite having the potential for generating enough revenue for sustainable development.

“Today, corruption remains the biggest threat to Africa’s development. Nearly 30-40% of Africa’s GDP is lost in corruption-related practices, yet Africa remains the richest continent in the world in terms of economic resources,” the KACC Director said.

Africa’s problems, he said, was being worsened by the persistent brain drain of professional trained people travelling to work in the developed world.

Lumumba said the phenomenon was largely due to the continent’s poor labor policies, low pay and high unemployment levels.

“Africans should desist from relying on divine intervention to solve their economic problems. The fight against corruption should be seen as a spiritual war, if we are to realize our vision to stamp out this deadly obstacle,” Lumumba remarked.

The two-day symposium, organized by the Kenya-based Education Center for Women in Democracy (ECWD) with funding from the Commonwealth Foundation drew civil society activists from the Kenya, Tanzania and Uganda.

ECWD chairperson, Tabitha Seii, the described corruption as a big obstacle to prosperity and said that if it was not eradicated, it could undermine efforts to achieve sustainable development.

Seii said that her organization was determined to ensure that there are as many female voices as possible in decision making processes. Fighting corruption, she added, should also involve the active involvement of all stakeholders.

“Women need to be part of this campaign for zero tolerance for corruption. As ECWD, we believe this is only possible with the active involvement of all policy makers, governments, stakeholders and communities,” Seii observed.

Millennium Development Goals

Reducing rampant poverty and high maternal mortality rates (two of the eight UN Millennium Development Goals - MDGs) also featured prominently at the symposium.

Some attendees to the conference argued that regional health structures and systems remain extremely weak, with untrained and unskilled personnel.

Dr. Angie Dawa, the Regional Manager for Abantu for Development advocated for a more effective approach to disseminating information on reproductive and maternal health-related issues.


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  • 21 August 2010 05:18, by Jamjamez

    This is what we expect for the people of Africa to realize that corruption could be simple in name but big and devastating in its effects. We have everything we need to be strong and productive economically in Africa. The whole world got something they want in Africa so why dont Africans realize this.

    Lets the few hungry leaders that gets to power and corrupt the public wealth know that Africa have had enough and is opening up for truth and prosperity. I have seen Lots of goverment official from Nigeria here in Washington DC’s suburbans living large all with the money from the poor in Nigeria.

    Its time for us as Africans to stand up and change the way we hope for the manna from heaven. The world is moving on!

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  • 21 August 2010 06:37, by Dinka Boy

    Prof. Lumumba ,

    You are right. African countries have natural resources that could generate revenues that could built the continent,but the management always failed because most of our politicians are not facilitating the development.

    The waste of resources through unnecessary means encouraged the African to remain in poverty. The hatred among each other has failed the entire nation because some people who to be wealthier than others.

    Consequently, the option is to suppressed the lower level people through corruption means. Why not doing budssiness among each other instead of unfair trade and war among each other. Some responsible people like to filled their interest and leave the poor under severe suffering notiablly.

    The development is the one need in our continent so that we will be like other development nations. I recommanded that the African leaders,especially the one with great leadership style to form their commuteed that will ammend the laws against the corruption. Thanks

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  • 21 August 2010 07:39, by Gat nyaraan

    A big hand for Prof Lumumba, and his eloquent remarks concerning corruption in Africa.

    Most African societies come to realization that there is amass corruption of government employees which drains most state funds for themselves. Now the ailment is known i.e corruption with its multi-pronged and facets. Few examples are clear to every African such as nepotism, power abuse (there is a ministry in our land which called ministry of arfa kurak(raise your leg)sad but funny),bribery, stealing state funds and many others. Corruption became rampant and entangling to the extent that it is crippling the development in the continent.
    Thousands words ,and books can be written about corruption and corrupters, but what is the action? How do we solve the problem? Yes there are anti-corruption commissions in most African countries south of Sahara but are they effective? The answer is no some of anti-corruption commissions are even god fathers of the corruption; obviously it’s their time to eat.

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  • 21 August 2010 08:20, by DASODIKO

    Professor. PLO Lumumba’is only African man who cares for the welfare of the Nation of Africa.Its very rare in Kenya to find a person on reputation of Dr. Lumumba walk on food; where the culture of all population has given up to corruption due to Wazungunization of Kenyan life that one must have a big house, big car and big food as well. Thump up Doc, I have met you many times walking on food on your very humble full suit the times I visit Nairobi.

    African leaders should learn from you, and you are the real Patrice Lumumba, he is never dead.

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  • 18 March 2013 14:30, by dennishobson

    sFAwUZPLyjdWpcvOE3XnqO6KhnzhAZssangyong madeira plastica plastic lumber very nice post, i certainly love this website, keep on it

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