Query: Who can report corruption and why should one report corrupt practices?
Response: It is the duty of every citizen to report a complaint. When one becomes aware of another person who has committed or is attempting to commit an offence contemplated in Chapter 4 of the Anti-Corruption Act, 2003 (Act No. 8 of 2003), it becomes a duty to report the matter. Any person may furnish the Commission with information in connection with any matter, which that person suspects on reasonable grounds concerns, or may concern a corrupt practice. Corruption affects us all. It is our common enemy, therefore, we all have a duty to report corrupt practices whenever we encounter them.
Query: Will anybody else know that I lodged a complaint with the ACC?
Response: You can report corruption anonymously. Being anonymous means that ACC will not reveal your identity during any subsequent enquiries or investigation (unless you, through the investigation process become a witness due to your relation / proximity to the complaint).
In line with Section 17(2) of the Anti-Corruption Act, 2003, allegations of corruption that are reported orally must be reduced to written form and must be signed by the informant. Similarly, if the information is provided in writing, it must be signed by the informant. The signed report is regarded authentic once it bears the particulars of the informant that should include his/her names.
Query: Will I be involved if an investigation is conducted?
Response: The information you provide to the ACC may not necessarily result in an investigation. If it does, you should be aware that, generally, the ACC does not involve individuals who report suspected corruption in its investigations. However, investigators may contact you if it is necessary to obtain further details or to clarify matters.
Query: What happens after a notification is made and how does the Commission decide what crimes to investigate? Are some people immune/above your investigations?
Response: ACC is an independent and impartial body that has a statutory mandate to fight corruption. The Anti-Corruption Act, 2003 empowers the Commission to initiate or receive and investigate allegations of corruption in both public and private bodies.
The Commission does not discriminate against any person. In deciding what to investigate, the commission is guided by Section 18 (1) (2) of the Anti-Corruption Act, 2003 that provides as follows:
The Commission must – (a) receive information furnished to it by any person who alleges that another person has or is engaged, or is about to engage, in a corrupt practice; and (b) examine each alleged corrupt practice and decide whether or not an investigation in relation to the allegation is warranted on reasonable grounds.
It indicates that when deciding whether an investigation into an alleged corrupt practice is warranted, the Commission may consider the followings:
The seriousness of the conduct or involvement to which the allegation relates.
Whether or not the allegation is frivolous or vexatious or is made in good faith.
Whether or not the conduct or involvement to which the allegation relates is or has been the subject of investigation or other action by any other appropriate authority for the purposes of any other law.
Whether or not, in all the circumstances, the carrying out of an investigation for the purposes of this Act in relation to the allegation is justified and in the public interest.
Query: How do you decide who to prosecute?
Response: The power to decide whether to prosecute anyone lies with the Prosecutor-General alone, and not with the Anti-Corruption Commission. Mrs. Josefina Nghituwamata, Chief Public Relations Officer, Anti-Corruption Commission, Email: firstname.lastname@example.org
New Era Reporter
2019-04-09 09:13:54 12 days ago