Soon they approached a big international competitor for exactly the same deal. It was announced with a lot of fanfare. I knew there was no way that deal could have been concluded without those bribes being paid. I put a team on it to collect evidence… It was a deep, deep dive! (I had all the information including the fancy corporate structures they had put in place to make it look legitimate.)A few months later I went nuclear: There is a law in the United States called the Foreign Corrupt Practices Act (“FCPA”). If you mention that to the directors of any major global corporation, people will start shaking, if they have been misbehaving! (The United Kingdom has a similar law called the British Anti-Bribery Act.)I wrote a letter to the US Justice Department and offered my evidence, including details about the demands for the bribes, dates, times, and records. They took quite a while to get back to me, and when they did it was a short letter simply thanking me for the report. Then one day a friend who worked for this big international company called: “All hell has broken loose here! The US ‘Feds’ have apparently opened a full investigation on that issue!”. . .Next week I’ll share with you a few more highlights (and lowlights) on this matter. When it comes to stopping corruption:#Africa‘sFutureTurnsOnThis!
If you are a civil servant or minister and you are fond of asking for bribes, particularly from international companies, let me warn you that laws are really being tightened globally. You and the company paying you bribes can end up being picked up by Interpol next time you are traveling somewhere! It happened to someone I know.
I know a few guys in hiding who cannot step outside their countries anymore because they are under FCPA investigation. The days of Swiss bank accounts and lavish spending abroad are coming to a close. All it needs is some “lowly” civil servant to pass on some key documents and you are finished, my friend.
Nothing harms our countries more than this kind of high-level corruption. It’s not hard to do what I did. And let me tell you, people were very keen to pass on information to me. As a “whistleblower,” you will be protected if you approach such organizations, but you must have real evidence and not be trying to settle your own scores, otherwise you will be the one in trouble.
To be continued…
Image credit: I ran into TD Jakes in Ghana yesterday!