The ongoing war on corruption seems to be headed in the right direction following the Treasury’s own decision to disrupt the potential networks with the transfer of at least 150 procurement and accounting officers.
The move comes hot on the heels of the vetting of public officers in the twin departments. Both the vetting and transfers are meant to disrupt corrupt cartels, reduce entrenchment and remove laxity among government employees.
It must, however, be clear that crafty State officers and their corrupt networks will always devise new ways of cheating the system and stealing from the taxpayers.
Therefore, the government needs to do more to stay ahead in the war against the cartels and their backers in the Public Service. The starting point should be to release the report on the vetting of the accounting and procurement officers that took place earlier in the year. As part of proactive measures, the officers who were found to be unsuitable to hold public positions should be named and shamed as well as punished for any wrongdoing in line with the disciplinary procedures. But incentives should also be part of the solution and must come in the form of rewards to officers with impeccable records.
Ultimately, only stern and decisive action against the corrupt – civil servants and suppliers alike – will send a strong message to perpetrators of graft that it is no longer business as usual in the management of public resources.