At the same time, we reaffirm our conviction that a successful campaign
against corruption demands the full participation of all sections of
society, including most importantly civil society and, with it, the
business community. It is our core belief that no government can hope to
tackle corruption effectively without the active support and involvement of
its citizens. For ourselves, we accept it as our solemn duty to combat
corruption effectively whenever and wherever it is taking place.
Meeting here on the African continent for the first time, we were moved by
the special contributions made by our African colleagues, as they shared
their own insights into a malaise which they share with all regions of the
world. We join in their conviction that South Africa and Nigeria have major
leadership roles to play in the continent's struggle.
We were honoured to have our proceedings opened by H.E. Thabo Mbeki,
President of the Republic of South Africa, who in a challenging and
stimulating address outlined the dimensions of the challenge we face.
Recalling an observation by George Soros, he observed that "There is
something wrong with making the survival of the fittest a guiding principle
of civilised society..." In President Mbeki's words our task is no less
than to ensure that "legitimate and democratic states...[evolve] the social
norms that militate against a perverted, anti-social individualism..."
We were also honoured with addresses from distinguished speakers from all
sections of public and private life who included H.E. Festus Mogae,
President of Botswana; James Wolfensohn, President of the World Bank; Chief
Justice Mustafa Kamal of Bangladesh; Mark Malloch-Brown, Administrator of
the UNDP; Ronald K. Noble, Secretary-General designate of INTERPOL; and
Robert Wilson, Chairman of Rio Tinto plc. UN Secretary-General Kofi Annan
and US Vice-President Al Gore (who had convened an international
anti-corruption conference in Washington in February) sent us messages of
encouragement and support. The address by Ms Wangari Maathai of the
Greenbelt Movement (Kenya) was an inspiration.
The Hon. Penuell Maduna, Minister of Justice of South Africa, presided
skillfully as our Conference Chairman and H.E. Joseph Zuma, Deputy
President of South Africa, closed our proceedings.
We stood in silence as a mark of our respect for Mwalimu Julius Nyerere,
former President of Tanzania, who passed away during our proceedings and
who had hoped to be with us. We all shared in Africa's loss of an
independence leader of the highest integrity.
Ours was essentially a working conference. In the course of the week we
attended no fewer than 41 separate workshops. Each addressed practical
steps to be taken against corruption in fields as varied as money-
laundering, public procurement, public education, business and public
sector ethics and public awareness raising through the performing arts.
Each produced sets of practical steps that can and must be taken as our
campaign proceeds. These will be widely publicised to the groups and
interests to whom they are addressed and placed on the Internet
We shall encourage and carefully monitor the
progress made, and will report fully to the Xth IACC in 2001.
Repeatedly we reminded ourselves that combating corruption is not a task
for law enforcement officials alone, nor even a task that is principally
theirs. Every prosecution, every act of corruption, represents a failure of
our personal, social and organisational systems designed to prevent such
conduct. We reminded ourselves, too, that "the hand that gives" is at
least as culpable as "the hand that takes". Every failure to recover the
proceeds of corruption serves to feed its growth.
While there are actions required from all at the international level, the
struggle to contain corruption at the national level is essentially a
domestic task, and the fight must come from within. External actors,
including donors, can assist this process, but for it to be effective and
enduring it must be locally owned, devised and driven.
In this context, as in others, we were reminded of the holistic nature of
our undertaking. None of us works in a vacuum, and all of us must work
with, and support, others if our task is to be accomplished.
In the course of our work together we took stock of the achievements of our
coalition since our deliberations in Lima, Peru in 1997 and where our
global coalition assumed such substance.
Much has been accomplished, but much remains to be done, especially to
institutionalise the fight against corruption in civil society at large, as
well as transparency, accountability and integrity in international and
At the international level, perhaps most noteworthy have been the
achievement of the OECD Convention Against the Bribery of Foreign Public
Officials in International Business Transactions (which now needs to be
further extended and rendered fully effective and to which we were pleased
to learn South Africa will soon become a party); the actions taken by some
developing countries as they increase their ability to co-operate against
corruption; the further progress made with the Council of Europe anti-
corruption conventions (both criminal and civil); the support for our
endeavour from international agencies has grown significantly (including
action within the World Trade Organisation); actions have been taken by the
International Chamber of Commerce to promote anti-bribery practices; multi-
lateral development banks in particular have started to name, shame and
exclude corrupt contractors from bidding for the projects they fund; and
professional associations are taking an increasing interest in our topic.
At the national and local level, the number of Ombudsmen offices has grown
significantly; exporting countries have started to end tax deductibility
for bribes and to criminalise overseas bribery by their exporters; a
growing number of countries have started to adopt and execute the holistic
anti-corruption strategies we have been recommending; increased attention
is being given to the protection of complainants and witnesses; and the
number of codes of conduct and Citizen's Charters continues to grow.
None of this is to suggest that we have only made progress. Clearly, in
some countries the movement has been minimal, at times negative, and
journalists in particular continue to be exposed to unacceptable risks as
they go about their legitimate tasks. So while we are encouraged by our
progress we acknowledge that our Lima Declaration will continue to be our
working tool for some time to come. We also renew our hope, expressed at
Lima, that in due course consideration will be given to the United Nations
designating an international day of action for integrity.
Against this background and as we enter a new century,
WE SOLEMNLY COMMIT OURSELVES to the following courses of action:
We will work with all stakeholders to foster meaningful
political will to confront corruption, and in ways which involve all
sections of society. As we are convinced that civil society has a crucial
role to play, we were delighted with the announcement made by the UNDP to
our conference that it will support a Partnership Fund, an initiative of
Transparency International, which will serve to empower more meaningful
participation by civil society in all these processes.
Innovations and emerging good practices
We will develop, identify and
publicise novel, imaginative and effective examples of good practice in
preventing and detecting corruption, such as the example in open public
tendering presented to us by the Mayor of Seoul. To this end we will
develop websites and information networks.
International and regional co-operation
We will work to maximise regional
and international co-operation in the fight against corruption in practical
ways, strengthening mutual legal assistance arrangements and fostering the
development of anti-corruption conventions for the African and Asian
regions. We wish to see the broad subject of combating corruption brought
on to the agendas of the major international trade organisations, WTO and
UNCTAD. Additionally, we will work to achieve full implementation of the
OECD Convention Combating the Bribery of Foreign Officials, and the anti-
bribery conventions of the Council of Europe and the Organisation of
American States (OAS) so that country efforts are supported by supply-side
sanctions. Monitoring will be a vital element to promote consistency and
co-operation. We will support actions at the United Nations to encourage
the criminalising of all forms of corruption, and we will enlarge an
understanding that both the supply side and the demand side of
international corruption must be attacked.
We welcome the scheduling of the Second Global Forum on Fighting Corruption
and Safeguarding Integrity Amongst Justice and Security Officials in The
Hague in 2001, a governmental forum which can serve to monitor critically
the implementation of convention obligations by individual governments and
as a forum which both reinforces and is itself reinforced by our own work
in the IACC coalition.
Transparency in public procurement
We will continue to work for increased
transparency in all fields, particularly in public procurement, and will
create private-public sector partnerships to develop reliable, open and
competitive systems, including open tendering on the Internet. At the
international level we look forward to the WTO, among others, playing a key
role, including the conclusion of an agreement on transparency in
government procurement at the November 1999 Seattle Ministerial Meeting.
Private sector integrity
We will explore the development of business
standards which foster and promote integrity and equip the private sector
with a tool which can demonstrate, in independently verifiable ways, their
individual commitments to integrity in their business practices.
Ethics in society
As a successful campaign against corruption demands the
full participation of all sections of society, including most importantly
civil society and, with it, the business community, we will work to raise
the standards of ethical conduct within the NGO community, in the private
sector and throughout the public service and our societies.
Money and politics
We will foster the development of creative ways in which
to contain the corrupt influence money has over many of our democratic
processes, with a focus on limiting its influence by reducing the costs of
elections and restricting expenditures and call on the International
Institute for Democracy and Electoral Assistance (International IDEA) in
Stockholm to accord the highest priority to this task.
Art against corruption
We will encourage innovation by our creative artists
for them to use their skills to communicate essential awareness messages to
a wide community, with a special focus on raising levels of ethics
throughout society and empowering especially the marginalised in rural and
depressed urban areas to recognise and act against the corruption they
Protection of complainants against corruption
We will encourage the
development of institutions, laws and practices which ensure that
responsible citizens can report instances of corruption without fear of
reprisals, wherever it may be occurring, and to ensure that the media is
free to play its pivotal role in holding relevant individuals and
institutions to account.
Independence of anti-corruption agencies/law enforcement
We will support
the institutions within our societies tasked with countering corruption to
ensure that their independence is respected by all, and that they are
adequately resourced. We will work, too, to ensure that they are held
accountable in ways free from political interference.
Use of civil remedies to recover proceeds and criminal burden of proof
We will encourage the development of civil law (i.e. non-criminal) processes
to enable the proceeds of corruption to be identified and recovered more
effectively than the criminal law may allow because of standard of proof
requirements. We will continue to explore constitutional ways of making the
criminal law more effective in areas where proof of specific acts of
corruption is difficult to obtain.
We will foster initiatives to contain corruption
within particularly vulnerable sectors, such as education, social services,
health, construction and mining and encourage leaderships within these to
develop and implement their own strategies in partnership with other
We will encourage members of the banking community and
others to create responses (including enforceable international
obligations) which will record transactions effectively, curb the levels of
money-laundering and which will facilitate the return to developing
countries of moneys looted by their leaders. We find it wholly
unacceptable that the moneys should be invested in institutions in the
developed world for the benefit of a corrupt few when they are desperately
needed by their rightful owners in the South for the benefit of all.
Judiciary and the Rule of Law
We will develop approaches capable of
restoring integrity to a judiciary in ways which call for greater
accountability but without eroding the judiciary's essential independence.
Customs and Police
We will build and strengthen partnerships with customs
administrations to check corruption and facilitate the revenue essential
for good governance and for public sector salaries to be raised, as they
must be in many countries. Similarly, we will build local coalitions to
support of reform-minded police commissioners to assure them of public
support for their efforts.
Debt cancellation and Jubilee 2000
We will support debt cancellation in the
framework of Jubilee 2000, where the benefits flow to the poor and not to
corrupt elites in the societies involved.
Tracking the effectiveness of reforms
We will continue to develop our
methodologies to analyse the nature and extent of corruption, and for
assessing the effectiveness of particular reforms.
In conclusion we express our gratitude for the warmth of their welcome to
our hosts, the Hon. Penuell Maduna, the government of South Africa and
their people; and for the excellence of the arrangements to the Conference
Co-ordinator, Dr. Danny Titus, to the International Anti-Corruption
Conference Council (IACCC) and its secretariat, Transparency International;
and to TI-South Africa and the South African Organising Committee it
facilitated. The conference organiser, Ms Melanie Campbell, and her able
team earned out admiration for their handling of the logistics of an
unusually demanding event.
Our struggle will be a long, an arduous and a continuing one. It will not
be won quickly, and in many ways it will be never-ending. The corrupt
amongst us will always try to pervert the well-being of our societies and
our institutions. Our commitment, therefore, is as long-terms as it is
We look forward to meeting again, in Prague, in two years' time, there to
take stock of our continued progress and to chart for the further years
Phambili Nokulwa Nenkohlakalo! (Zulu = Forward with the struggle against
A luta continua (Portuguese = The struggle goes on)!
Together, we can, and we shall, overcome!
15 October 1999