UK decision to ban Bain welcomed – EFF

Fighters says corrupt companies and individuals should be dealt with wherever they are in the world

EFF statement on the decision of the United Kingdom to ban Bain and Company from doing business with that government

4 August 2022

The Economic Freedom Fighters (EFF) notes the decision by the government of the United Kingdom to ban contracts with the Bain & Company global consulting firm over their purported role in the capture of the South African Revenue Services during Jacob Zuma's administration. Whistleblowers had for some time been exerting pressure on the UK government to terminate business ties with Bain, which still had in their London offices senior associates who had played a critical role in corruption in South Africa. The EFF welcomes the decision to ban this corrupt company, and calls on those tasked with dealing with corruption to deal with corrupt companies and individuals wherever they are in the world.

The EFF has maintained the view that the private sector, particularly international consultancy firms, are the key drivers of corruption in this country and in the continent.

State officials do not bribe themselves; they are seduced and fall for the crumbs that these private companies afford them. To root out corruption, it is not enough to simply prosecute those in the public sector, their counterparts in the private sector must be vigorously pursued and prosecuted too, and their businesses must be made to pay the price for corruption.

While we welcome this decision, we are embarrassed that no action has been taken by any of the entities tasked with investigating and prosecuting crimes in South Africa against Bain and other corrupt companies. In fact, those masquerading as advocates of anti-corruption, such as Busisiwe Mavuso of the Business Leadership South Africa were fully in support of Bain as recent as January this year. The BLSA, in its defence of Bain in January, indicated that the company was not inherently corrupt, and did not support calls for government and business to terminate relations with Bain in South Africa. While Bain later resigned as a member of the BLSA, what this demonstrated is that business leadership in South Africa is not opposed to corruption, if it is done by their friends and those they like. Bain & Company's corrupt activities in this country are only the tip of the iceberg, because the private sector continues to dictate policies and programmes to this present administration too, while looting Billions of Rands under the pretence of providing support to this administration.

More disgustingly, South Africa has not banned this company, even though these crimes were committed against her people. Bain continues doing business in this country, unhindered, despite the hollow commitments to fight corruption by the current administration. We call on the National Treasury to take bold steps against all the companies involved in State capture, past and present. We also call for swift prosecutions of these companies. Leaving leaders of companies such as Bain, Steinhoff and others untouched renders the fight against corruption in this country meaningless

Issued by Sinawo Thambo, National Spokesperson, EFF, 4 August 2022