Corruption Watch annual report 2016

Annual report 2016

Today, a month after its fifth birthday, Corruption Watch releases its fifth annual report. The report celebrates the almost 15 000 whistle-blowers who have approached us during the last half a decade, and also features highlights of what was a busy year for the organisation. In 2016 we received 4 391 corruption reports – an average of 11 reports a day. A comparison with previous years reveals that we received 3 276 reports in 2012, 2 485 reports in 2013, 2 838 reports in 2014, and 2 426 reports in 2015. In total we have received 15 416 reports since we opened our doors in January 2012. We define corruption as the abuse of public resources or public power for personal gain.

2016 was the year in which South Africans decisively and publicly rejected corruption.

David Lewis, Executive Director of Corruption Watch.

“2016 was the year in which South Africans decisively and publicly rejected corruption,” commented David Lewis, executive director of Corruption Watch. “From ordinary voters and community members through to leading public officials and cabinet ministers, there was a groundswell of opposition to corruption and its perpetrators. But the fight is not over by any means. The future of our country rests on our ability to maintain and intensify the pressure exerted in 2016.”

The whistle-blowing reports that we receive are the source of our legitimacy, as they enable us to speak with the voice of the public, Lewis added. “They provide us with the ability to identify patterns and hotspots of corruption, to target campaigns, to investigate and to litigate. They constitute the evidence that we present to those in authority.”

The hotspots we identified from the reports include:

  • Schools – 16%
  • Road traffic – 7%
  • Licensing – 6%
  • Immigration – 6%
  • Housing 5%

We also found that, as before, most reports (51%) originated in Gauteng, although this can be attributed to factors such as it being the country’s most populous province, as well as the one where we do most of our work and therefore have developed constructive relationships with the Johannesburg Metro Police and the Gauteng Department of Education, among others. KwaZulu-Natal, the Western Cape and the Eastern Cape followed at a distance.

Following the pattern established in previous years, abuse of power made up the bulk of corruption reports at 28%, followed by bribery at 24% and procurement corruption at 17%.