n Journal of South African Law / Tydskrif vir die Suid-Afrikaanse Reg - Highlighting flaws in the Prevention and Combating of Corrupt Activities Act 12 of 2004

Volume 2019 Number 4
  • ISSN : 0257-7747


The devastating effect of the crime of corruption on various levels of society has been widely reported. Burchell mentions that this crime phenomenon is punished in respect of officials as it is subversive of the democratic principles of public administration and destroys public confidence and trust in the administration whilst Kemp links corruption to the wider fight against transnational organised crime (Burchell Principles of Criminal Law (2016) 804; Kemp et al Criminal Law in South Africa (2015) 443). Snyman warns that corruption inter alia “endangers the free market economy, creates a breeding ground for organized crime, results in some people becoming rich at the expense of others, increases levels of poverty, impedes economic development, [and] destroys the pillars of democracy…” (Criminal Law (2014) 401). These sentiments are also echoed from elsewhere in the world. Kaiafa- Gbandi declares that “[c]orruption is indeed a phenomenon whose consequences are associated with major predicaments afflicting contemporary societies: poverty, immigration, environmental degradation, and especially the corrosion of democracy and the rule of law” (“Punishing corruption in the public and the private sector: key issues on current EU policy and the rule-of-law challenges” in Mitsilegas, Bergström and Konstadinides Research Handbook on EU Criminal Law (2016) 377; also see Hualing “The upward and downward spirals in China’s anti-corruption enforcement” in McConville and Pils Comparative Perspectives on Criminal Justice in China (2013) 390-410; Gardner and Anderson Criminal Law (2015) 415-424 reflect on the position in the United States of America). The following lamentation by Bande on corruption in Malawi illustrates the extent and far-reaching effects of this crime when it is allowed to flourish unabated (Criminal Law in Malawi (2017)):

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