Corruption is the single most destructive force in South Africa and Mpumalaga is no exception. Although this is a difficult problem to tackle, particularly for a small organisation with no powers to investigate, there is a few projects which we have undertaken resulting in successes.
When we dealt with the issue of tourism safety, we came across the problem of bribes being extorted by traffic officials from tourists on the main tourism routes, claiming they have to pay fines for a traffic violation (sometimes fictitious). This became out of hand because tourists are typically not available to testify in court and then there is no evidence to prosecute with.
- Road-side anti-corruption campaign – Hand out business cards to tourists to warn them against the paying of “cash traffic fines” on the side of the road. The card also contains the mobile telephone number of the investigating officer.
- Hand on my Heart campaign promoting ethics is 5 simple words – the 5 fingers on the hand makes it easy to remember. We encouraged businesses and government entities to roll this out and make public statements about it.
HONESTY: (Doing what you say)
Being Truthful and honest in all our dealings, disclosures and reporting
Delivering on our promises
Refraining from activities that are corrupt or can be seen as promoting corruption in society
Duly considering the interests of people, communities and the environment where decisions could affect them.
RESPECT: (Others’ rights & dignity)
Treating customers, staff and all other stakeholders with dignity
Upholding basic human rights, including those set out in the South African Constitution
Refraining from arbitrary or unjustified discrimination against anyone
Ensuring a safe and healthy work environment.
FAIRNESS: (Balancing interests)
Supporting free and fair competition by not being involved in price-fixing or other anticompetitive activities
Upholding just labour practices and paying fair wages
Negotiating in good faith, and refraining from coercion
Supporting freedom of association and collective bargaining.
EMPOWERMENT: (Taking ownership)
Actively promoting good citizenry and participating in the community
Exercising our obligations with due care, diligence and the required skill
Practising good governance in our business strategies and operations
Upholding all applicable laws, rules, and standards, reporting corruption and illegal activities.
UBUNTU: (Thinking long-term)
Being prudent in our use of natural resources
Supporting growth and development in South Africa, by, for example paying our due taxes and providing reasonable remuneration to employees
Being sensitive to inequality in the economic, social and natural environments in which we operate.
- To date and to our knowledge, as much as 21 traffic officers were arrested in the Lowveld area and recently there were witnesses that are able to testify in these cases. We are hopeful that some of them will be prosecuted and sentenced.
- Hand on my Heart was rolled out in several large businesses. KLCBT’s president also takes this oath during his / her inauguration before they take office.
“I (your name) hereby pledge that I will uphold and promote good integrity in all my dealings, actions and attitude and that I will not ignore or allow any action what will harm or tarnish my integrity:
I pledge to be HONEST,
To be RESPECTFUL,
To EMPOWER others and empower myself with knowledge,
To be FAIR,
And to live with the spirit of UBUNTU…”