President of Kenya and CEOs Stand Together Against Corruption at Global Conference in Nairobi

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President of Kenya and CEOs Stand Together Against Corruption at Global Conference in Nairobi

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Marking #AntiCorruption day, @globalcompact event featured @UKenyatta speaking on importance of transparency

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Friday, December 11, 2015 - 5:00pm

CONTENT: Press Release

Nairobi, Kenya, 11 December 2015 /3BL Media/ - Marking International Anti-Corruption Day, the 17th Working Group of the 10th Principle against Corruption and International Anti-Corruption Conference was held on 8-9 December in Nairobi, Kenya. Organized in collaboration with the Global Compact Network Kenya and Safaricom Ltd., the event convened over 400 high-level representatives from the private sector, Government, international organizations, civil society and the media to discuss the role of the private sector in integrity and transparency.

The event served to raise awareness about the critical role of the private sector in stemming the tide against corruption and the importance of all stakeholders – public, private and civil society – to join hands against corruption.

His Excellency, Uhuru Muigai Kenyatta, CGH, President of the Republic of Kenya, opened the Conference delivering welcome remarks.  In his speech for the conference, which he called “important and timely”, President Kenyatta emphasized transparency as a cornerstone to development and discussed the wide-reaching effects of corruption on everything from the health and education to the security of all citizens.  Business, he noted, was no different in feeling the effects of corruption.  “Corruption is a problem for business. Corruption is anti-business,” the President said speaking to the private sector. “I do not need to tell you that it directly harms your businesses; that it discourages innovation; that it eats up your profits. But I do want to emphasize that if you are corrupt, you weaken Government.” 

President Kenyatta expressed the need for Government to work with the private sector in the “war against corruption” and called on business to join his Government in the fight.  He noted the work of the UN Global Compact and its “spirit of partnership between Government, business and citizens”, a concept, which his own administration has embraced and expressed interest in working with the UN Global Compact to implement risk assessment training for his administration.  President Kenyatta also announced his Government’s plans to adopt the business code of conduct, developed by the Kenya Private Sector Alliance and Global Compact Network Kenya, as part of their public procurement regulations, the first step in the growing alliance against corruption in the country.

During the high-level plenary on the role the private sector can play in advancing the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) and implementing meaningful anti-corruption efforts, panelists discussed the many ways in which corruption undermines the foundation of social and economic goals.  While corruption may be at the forefront of only one of the goals – SDG 16 – the panelists agreed that corruption was at the core of many of the SDGs and emphasized the need to first address and remove corruption in order to make substantive progress in any other areas.  Speaking on the panel, UN Global Compact Board Member and Safaricom CEO Bob Collymore stressed the business imperative for the private sector to be not just a partner but also a leader in the advancement of the SDGs, in particular when it comes to the collective fight against corruption.  “If we are to put the Government to task to promote anti-corruption measures and establish systems of good governance, the private sector too must lead by example,” Collymore said. “We must not allow ourselves to enable unethical behaviour.”   

The two-day event featured panel discussions on emerging and innovative anti-corruption measures; the role of whistleblowers; corruption in the illicit trade of wildlife and poaching; and how business can embed good governance and anti-corruption into their operations and policies.  Over the course of two days, speakers and participants discussed the shift in attitudes and perceptions towards corruption and the need for stronger regulatory frameworks to promote disclosure by the private sector.  During the Gala Dinner, the UN Global Compact and Global Compact Network Kenya presented the Call to Action and Code of Ethics: their respective global and local initiatives, in which businesses commit to fighting corruption and advocate for stronger Government enforcement of anti-corruption measures.

Following the conclusion of the conference, the UN Global Compact and Global Compact Network Kenya organized an Anti-Corruption Risk Assessment Training for businesses. The training, which guides business on how to assess and calculate their corruption risks and then develop and implement an action plan, continued the momentum of the conference in galvanizing private sector involvement in the fight against corruption while offering business the tools and resources to take action in their operations. 


Neha Das
UN Global Compact
Keywords: Events, Media & Communications | Events, Media & Communications | Global Compact | Integrity | Responsible Business & Employee Engagement | SDGs | Social Impact & Volunteering | Transparency | UN Global Compact | United Nations Global Compact | anti corruption

CONTENT: Press Release