In Rwanda there are great disincentives to be corrupt, this is according to the country’s president, Mr. Paul Kagame.
Rwandan public officials who are caught in acts of corruption face the consequences of hefty fines, the auctioning of their properties and long jail terms if convicted by a court of competent jurisprudence. On a normal day, the country is a no-nonsense place for the vice and the dwindling domestic revenues due to the impact of the global corona virus pandemic has led the authorities to step up their vigilance and fight against corruption.
Some top government officials were recently arrested on the suspicion of embezzlement of funds. President Kagame speaking on the development with The EastAfrican in a virtual interview stated that his government will not relent in its fight to totally stamp out traces of corruption everywhere in the fabric of the Rwandan society.
“To minimise or reduce corruption like in our case (Rwanda)… simply means maximising pressure on the corrupt. What is happening now is exactly in that direction,” President Kagame said.
Earlier this week, prosecutors in the country announced that they are considering seeking the freezing of bank accounts and properties of the government officials under investigation for corruption after it emerged some have devised tricks and networks to conceal or move their assets once under the radar of investigators.
“We have always talked about not entertaining corruption as our way of life. That has always been at the centre of the politics that I have associated with and others in this country, and I think there is respect for that,” Mr. Kagame said, underscoring Rwanda’s zero-tolerance for corruption in any form.
“For me, the most important thing to do is to do things properly. Follow due process and fairness, listen to the person who is accused to ensure they are aware that the case is real, therefore, accountability is necessary,” he added.
Last year 2019, some 1,187 people were tried for various suspected cases of corruption and mismanagement of government funds.
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