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UK anti-corruption sanctions and Africa

United Kingdom (UK) foreign secretary Dominic Raab on 26 April announced the imposition of sanctions against 22 individuals, including four from South Africa and one from Sudan, in the first wave of the UK government’s new Global Anti-Corruption Sanctions Regulations regime. The new regime gives UK authorities power to impose visa bans and asset freezes on corrupt foreign officials and their related entities without going through the local authorities and courts, and means London– based global banks holding accounts held by sanctioned individuals can be sanctioned. 

What remains unclear is what assets these individuals have under the UK jurisdiction and how stringently UK regulatory and enforcement bodies act upon the formidable new measures. That said, Raab’s announcement indicates that the UK, which has long been a favoured destination for corrupt African leaders and their business acolytes, is taking a strong stance against impunity. 

Read the full update here

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Engineering news: It’s time to dare to plan anew…

16 April 2021: “A year ago, in the face of the first Covid-19 death in Egypt, I wrote that the time for governments to act was immediately and that the time for corporates to plan for a pandemic was yesterday. The arrival on the continent of millions of doses of vaccines marks a significant change in the continent’s political and economic outlook”…

ARC’s Tara O’Connor examines the impact of a year of Covid-19 in Africa. She believes this is the time for companies to look forward with optimism and plan for the post-Covid world. Read the full article here.

ARC news bulletin

18 March 2021: President John Magufuli has died. After his 19-day absence, Tanzania‘s vice president Samia Suluhu Hassan (2015-present) has assumed control but has yet to be sworn in. 

A 14-day period of mourning has been announced and will disrupt business decisions. Opposition party members have made calls for the vice president to be sworn in immediately.

Download the full news bulletin from ARC’s Tanzania Briefing here.

ARC Briefing is Africa Risk Consulting‘s information service providing country-focused updates from across Africa.

The ARC Insider, Episode 20: Food for Thought –…

For the last episode of the year, Tara and Karen give a whistle-stop tour of current news stories from across Africa. This week’s guest is a dynamic man from the world of food. A former East African Coca-Cola executive voted among the top 100 business leaders in Africa by Forbes Afrique, Peter Njonjo is the founder of Twiga Foods, the Kenya business-to-business food distribution platform which is disrupting the way small store holders in cities like Nairobi access produce from farms, bypassing the middleman and using the latest digital technology to force prices down.

Event: Africa’s anti-corruption drive, 2020 and beyond…

Corruption undermines democratic institutions, slows economic development and contributes to governmental instability. It is no coincidence that the most corrupt countries in the world are also on the Fragile States Index. Many of these countries are in Africa. ARC continues to work with businesses operating in Africa to mitigate the risks posed by corruption and bribery. In 2021, we will be hosting a series of anti-bribery and corruption training events, we look forward to sharing more details on this with you soon. Please get in touch now if you are interested in participating.   

The United Nations General Assembly (UNGA) designates 9 December as International Anti-Corruption Day. It is a day for governments, businesses, civil society and the whole of society to renew our commitment to working together to end the devastating impact of corruption on people’s lives around the world. ARC was pleased to mark this important day by hosting an anti-corruption virtual event. 

The main themes addressed included trends in corporate corruption, exploring the continent’s biggest corruption breakthroughs in 2020 and uncovering what lies ahead in 2021.

Tara was joined in this virtual conversation by Kenya’s former anti- corruption tsar John Githongo and Lord Peter Hain – one of South Africa’s “most potent weapons” in the country’s fight against corruption.

Email us now to receive the full recording.

Engineering news 2020: Read ARC’s monthly contributions to one…

ARC’s Tara O’Connor examines and provides insightful analysis on all major economic and socio-political developments in Africa over the last 12 months in her monthly column for one of the continent’s leading online news platform – Engineering News. Click here to read all articles from 2020 online now. 

The ARC Insider, Episode 19: “Getting stuff done” in…

Karen Allen and Tara O’Connor spoke with Maya Famodu, an award-winning entrepreneur venture capitalist. Maya’s talent-spotting led to an early investment in Paystack, now the subject of a $200m buyout by US giant Stripe– the biggest start-up acquisition to date to come out of Nigeria and one which belies the country’s bankruptcy at federal level. Listen to the full episode here & subscribe to The ARC Insider here.

Of death, debt and democracy

By Tara O’Connor for Engineering News, published on 11th December 2020.

As the first year of the plague closes out, a second year threatens a second wave of the Covid-19 pandemic. Africa has seen fewer infections and deaths, but the virus has had other lasting consequences.

The effect on political stability has been acute in several countries, and acute and destabilising in Africa’s largest economy, Nigeria. It is a political truth in Nigeria that, when the oil price falls below $40/lb, its trickle-down economics fail and people’s distress is manifest in unrest. Unsurprising then that a video showing a member of the notorious Special Anti-Robbery Squad (SARS) executing a suspect prompted protests nationwide. What was surprising was the actions of a purportedly civilian government – which was to deploy the military to a peaceful protest. The army opened fire with no warning, killing 56 protesters, in scenes reminiscent of the worst days of military rule, which ended in 1999. Read the full article here.