Corruption in the construction industry all over the world is a serious canker which needs to be tackled holistically, the President of the Ghana Institution of Engineers, Andrew T. Barfour, has said.
He said corruption caused poverty and suffering and inhibited economic growth, and that it was damaging to business, escalated project cost and might result in criminal and civil liability and penalties for organisations and individuals.
"In Ghana infrastructural development takes about 80-85 per cent of our capital budget and if we assume that we can gain one per cent by anti-corruption measures, we will be saving millions of Ghana Cedis for other socio-economic development," he said.
Mr Barfour was speaking at the opening of a two-day workshop on Ethical Business Practice at the Ghana Institution of Engineers in Accra Monday.
Corruption, he said, included bribery, extortion, fraud, deception, collusion, cartels abuse of power, embezzlement, trading in influence and money laundering, among others.
To address such corrupt practices, he said, it was necessary for organisations or the country to adopt an anti-corruption code.
"In our part of the world, corruption has permeated all fabrics of the society that we have a Herculean task to handle," he said, adding that the workshop was one of the first steps among other things to fight corruption.
Mr Barfour said ethical business practice was an anti-corruption workshop that sought to educate members in the infrastructural business on sound business practices.
He stressed the need for all to join the fight against corruption, especially on construction projects, saying that a research by the American Society of Engineers showed that 10 per cent on construction projects the world over was attributed to corruption.
The Co-founder and Director of the Global Infrastructure Anti-Corruption Centre in the United Kingdom, Mr Neil Stansbury, who is the key resource person at the workshop, said government departments, project owners, consulting engineers, contractors, suppliers and sub-contractors should all adopt anti-corruption measures in their day-to-day activities.
He said prosecution agencies worldwide were now starting to investigate and prosecute companies and individuals for corruption, hence the need for all to join the fight against corruption.
He said organisations should develop codes of conduct which included an anti-corruption element and publish such codes of ethics.
Mr Stansbury said all contracts between an organisation and its business partners should also contain anti-corruption contract terms which "provide express contractual obligations and penalties in relation to corruption".
Source: Daily Graphic/Ghana
|Disclaimer: Opinions expressed here are those of the writers and do not reflect those of Peacefmonline.com. Peacefmonline.com accepts no responsibility legal or otherwise for their accuracy of content. Please report any inappropriate content to us, and we will evaluate it as a matter of priority.|