The COVID-19 pandemic has exposed a multitude of governance failures around the world and led to increased calls for fundamental changes to our global political, economic and social systems. Against the backdrop of a looming global recession, addressing corruption and the misappropriation of state resources remains as important as ever.
South Africa needs to take firm action to protect limited state resources and ensure good governance of public finances if it is to deliver to its people the basic rights
enshrined in its constitution and to attract the necessary investment needed to fuel future economic growth.
Despite the widespread negative economic impacts wrought by the pandemic, the current political climate provides a unique opportunity to reinvigorate the country’s fight against corruption.
To deal with corruption, cabinet and the governing party have proposed various measures ranging from criminal prosecution to requiring officials to step down from public office if charged. While it is encouraging to hear more robust anti-corruption rhetoric from the senior leadership in both government and the ANC, many initiatives and proposals remain statements of intent and it remains to be seen whether subsequent action will demonstrate whether “a line in the sand” has been drawn.