Nairobi hosts key regional anti-corruption meetings for Eastern Africa

Members of the Executive Committee of the Eastern Africa Association of Anti-Corruption Authorities, during the 22nd Executive Committee Meeting in Addis Ababa, Ethiopia, in February 2022.

Photo credit: EAAACA

The Eastern Africa Association of Anti-Corruption Authorities (EAAACA) and the Asset Recovery Inter-Agency Network for Eastern Africa (ARIN-EA) are holding Annual General Meetings in Nairobi, Kenya, which started on Monday, March 14, to be concluded on Friday, March 18, 2022. 

The five-day event brings together anti-corruption agencies from Eastern Africa. The agencies include the Office of the Ombudsman of Rwanda, the Special Brigade of the Anti-Corruption of Burundi, the Federal Ethics and Anticorruption Commission of Ethiopia, the Inspection General of the State of Djibouti, the South Sudan Anti-Corruption Commission, the Inspectorate of Government of Uganda, the Prevention and Combating Corruption Bureau of Tanzania, and the Ethics and Anti-Corruption Commission of Kenya.

EAAACA was established on September 8, 2007 in Kampala, Uganda, to provide a platform for mutual assistance in training, investigations, prosecutions, and exchange of information, intelligence, experiences and practices, all aimed at strengthening the fight against corruption. 

The vision of the Association is “An Eastern Africa Region free from Corruption”,while its mission is to “Strengthen the capacity of EAAACA members to prevent and combat corruption through regional cooperation”.  

Through EAAACA, member states have benefited from the exchange of information that has enhanced anti-corruption initiatives.

The Asset Recovery Inter-Agency Network for Eastern Africa (ARIN-EA) is the asset recovery arm of EAAACA, launched on November 6, 2013, in Kigali, Rwanda, during the 7th EAAACA Annual General Meeting. The objective of this forum is to provide an informal network in Eastern Africa for the exchange of information, towards the recovery of assets acquired through corruption and other crimes.

ARIN-EA works closely with other asset recovery regional networks, including the Camden Asset Recovery Inter-Agency Network (Europe, Canada and USA), Asset Recovery Network of GAFILAT (Latin America), Asset Recovery Interagency Network for Asia-Pacific, Asset Recovery Interagency Network for South Africa, and Asset Recovery Interagency Network for West Africa, in facilitating international cooperation and exchange of information. This is necessary, given the transnational nature of corruption offences.

Through ARIN-EA, member countries have exchanged information that has enhanced investigations and formed the basis for Mutual Legal Assistance (MLA). Since inception, assets worth $1 billion have been tracked through the ARIN-EA network, triggering investigations and formal MLA requests. For instance, in the Financial Year 2019-2020, out of the informal assistance received through ARIN-EA, Kenya made a total of 45 formal requests for mutual legal assistance to over 20 jurisdictions, out of which 32 were successfully executed.

The Network has also facilitated joint specialised training for technical officers from anti-corruption agencies. This has enhanced capacity and resulted in an increased number of civil asset forfeiture cases of unexplained properties. In Kenya, for instance, the EACC, in the Financial Year 2019-2020, instituted suits for the recovery of corruptly acquired assets worth Ksh5 billion.