18 April 2017

Africa: Kigali to Reward Graft Whistleblowers

Photo: Adam Jones, Ph.D./Wikpedia
There is No Space for Corruption in Rwanda - Billboard in Musanze-Ruhengeri

Rwanda has promised financial rewards and security for whistleblowers whose information leads to the recovery or protection of public assets as it seeks to motivate the public to get more involved in the fight against corruption.

A draft law approved by the Cabinet last week proposes that any person who discloses information leading to the recovery of property or to the protection of the public interest in both public and private institutions will receive a financial reward while those who compromise the identity of a whistleblower face fines or even prison.

The law, which now heads to parliament for debate and enactment, does not give details of the specific rewards.

A presidential order will determine that. Once it comes into force, it will repeal the current law that was passed in 2012.

Rwandan civil society and Human Rights Watch welcomed the development.

"We welcome the government's effort to enhance legal protections for whistleblowers. The government should protect them both in law and in practice," said HRW director for central Africa Ida Sawyer.

AmendmentsThe chairperson of Transparency International Rwanda Imaculee Ingabire said that they have been advocating for amendments to the current law because they felt it did not provide adequate protection for whistleblowers against persecution and intimidation by powerful people.

In addition to financial rewards, the new law orders all institutions to designate an employee responsible for receiving anonymous information and cautions them to protect the identity of the information providers.

It also extends protection to a whistleblower's immediate family and his or her informants in the event that his identity is unmasked.In case a whistleblower is summoned by a judge, his or her identity must not be disclosed and the hearing must be conducted in-camera.


Chimpanzees Eat Plants That Point to New Ways of Treating Diseases

As cancer and other non-infectious diseases continue to rise all over the world it's become harder for scientists to… Read more »

See What Everyone is Watching

Copyright © 2017 The East African. All rights reserved. Distributed by AllAfrica Global Media (allAfrica.com). To contact the copyright holder directly for corrections — or for permission to republish or make other authorized use of this material, click here.

AllAfrica publishes around 800 reports a day from more than 140 news organizations and over 500 other institutions and individuals, representing a diversity of positions on every topic. We publish news and views ranging from vigorous opponents of governments to government publications and spokespersons. Publishers named above each report are responsible for their own content, which AllAfrica does not have the legal right to edit or correct.

Articles and commentaries that identify allAfrica.com as the publisher are produced or commissioned by AllAfrica. To address comments or complaints, please Contact us.