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$50 billion lost annually to corruption in Africa
The Chairperson of the African Union Commission, Mr. Moussa Faki Mahamat has disclosed that a whopping $50 billion is lost annually to Corruption and Illicit Financial Flows in the continent.
He was speaking at the 32nd Ordinary Session of the Executive Council of the African Union which officially opened on Thursday 25th January, 2018 at the AU Headquarters in Addis Ababa, Ethiopia.
The theme of the summit is “Winning the Fight against Corruption: A Sustainable Path to Africa’s Transformation.”
Qouting the Report of the AU High Level Panel on illicit financial flows from Africa, Mahamat expressed concern that the continent has continuously relied on external assistance because of huge financial loss through corruption.
He therefore called for collective efforts and actions to win the fight against corruption in Africa.
The Executive Secretary of the United Nations Economic Commission for Africa (ECA), Ms. Vera Songwe, underlined the need for African countries to collectively conquer corruption.
Songwe added that it is only through this that the continent can achieve lasting independence and sustainable development.
The Chairperson of the Executive Council and Minister of Foreign Affairs of the Republic of Guinea, Mr. Mamadi Touré, stressed the need for the Council to accelerate the implementation of the AU financing and the continental free trade area to expedite Africa’s self-reliance and to improve on living conditions in the continent.
Other speakers at the meeting agreed that if Africa would fulfill the aspirations articulated in the Agenda 2063, particularly an Africa that is democratic and developed, prosperous and at peace, urgent steps must be taken by African leaders to win the fight against corruption in the continent.
The Executive Council comprises Ministers of Foreign Affairs of AU Member States and by Article 13 of the AU Constitutive Act, the Council is mandated to coordinate and take decisions on policies in areas of common interest to Member States, consider issues referred to it and monitor the implementation of Assembly policies.
The article equally empowers the Council to deliberate on a list of substantive policy areas ranging from foreign trade, energy, agriculture and the environment to humanitarian response, health, social security and disability.
The Council reports to the Assembly of Heads of State and determines the issues to be submitted to the assembly for decision.