The Challenge


Governance indicators reveal that corruption remains a significant obstacle to development in several countries of the region. Corruption leads to resources earmarked for development not being used for their intended purpose and also facilitates organized crime, including but not limited to wildlife and forestry crime. Legislative and institutional frameworks need to be strengthened to enable Countries in the region to protect themselves against the threats posed by corruption.

What we do

UN Convention Against Corruption

The UN Convention Against Corruption (UNCAC) provides a comprehensive global framework to prevent and combat corruption.
All Countries in the Southern African Region are party to UNCAC and are undergoing review of implementation of the Convention.
The review has been split into two cycles. The first cycle which ran from 2010 t0 2016 concentrated on the Chapter 3 which covers criminalization and Chapter 4 on international cooperation. The second cycle which will run for 5 years from June 2016 will focus on the review of implementation of Chapter 2 on corruption prevention and Chapter 5 on asset recovery. As the guardian of UNCAC, UNODC has been active assisting Governments in the Southern African region to conduct these reviews.

The following member states in the region have completed these reviews: Botswana, Lesotho, Namibia, South Africa, Zambia and Zimbabwe. Currently Malawi, Mozambique and Swaziland are being actively assisted to complete their reviews. The published documentation in respect of each Countries review can be found accessed here. The second cycle of the review mechanism will be launched in June 2016. UNODC will continue to offer support to Countries in the region to engage in these reviews.

Technical Assistance

Beyond support to engage in and follow-up on the UNCAC review mechanism, UNODC supports Member States in the Southern African region on anti-corruption with technical assistance in response to request by Member States.

This ad hoc technical assistance ranges from legislative drafting through building investigative and prosecutorial capacity to building national and institutional level anti-corruption strategies. Currently a full time adviser in embedded in the Office of the Prosecutor-General in Mozambique. Other recent examples of ad hoc support include advising Botswana on developing regulations to help implement a new proceeds of crime act and training for wildlife prosecutors from Angola, Botswana, Malawi, Mozambique, Namibia and Zambia on how to use corruption charges against more senior members of the criminal gangs perpetrating wildlife crime.

Furthermore, on-site capacity-building initiatives with investigators and other professionals have led to excellent advances in investigations into corruption. With the aim of increasing the number of corruption cases that move beyond investigation to successful prosecution and asset recovery, UNODC Southern Africa seeks to widen its assistance to include capacity-building among prosecution authorities across the region. Current plans include the establishment of a regional forum of national prosecution authorities, which will help facilitate cross-border investigations, prosecutions and asset recovery, as well as strengthen efforts to align procedures and standards related to the penal provisions of the Conventions.

Regional Cooperation

UNODC Southern Africa also cooperates with other intergovernmental and regional bodies to deliver joint regional programmes. Currently UNODC is working in partnership with the Commonwealth Africa Anti-Corruption Center to assess the Standard Operating Procedures used by Commonwealth African Anti-Corruption Authorities and to create a library of those procedures. UNODC is also in discussion with the newly formed Southern African Development Community Anti-Corruption Committee to identify areas for joint implementation


UNODC Global Action against Corruption and Economic Crime

Through its global Anit-Corruption initiatives, UNODC has developed a wide range of tools, publications and resources, which can accessed here.