By Jeff Pizzino, APR, Corporate Communications –
The primary reason people rely upon a centralized government is for protection. As part of that protection as it relates to the appropriation and spending of tax dollars and finances, the people must be able to count on those in charge to maintain integrity. Without that trust, the people lose confidence.
Yet money, as always, continues to make the world go ‘round. Whether it’s used to escape incrimination or to get ahead, money will always be an easy corruption tool. Government officials are certainly not immune from the distraction of “easy money.”
Corruption in South African Financial Services Board
According to a report published on June 20, 2014, Dawood Seedat, formerly the chief financial officer of South Africa’s Financial Services Board, received significant sums of bribery money to cover up an audit against Africa Cash ‘n Carry. This organization, based in Johannesburg, is one of the largest specialist cash and carry wholesalers in South Africa.
Details are questionable about the validity of the audit and how much bribe money was paid. To make matters worse for Seedat, there was a video recording of the last two bribery payments. Millions of South African Rands may have passed hands in a seriously corrupt action by one government official.
Seedat’s lawyer refuted the allegations. Still, due to the allegations, Seedat ended up resigning from the Financial Services Board.
As always, it’s difficult to determine whether or not accusations have merit and whether Seedat is innocent. Corruption charges make tough financial situations even more difficult to sort through.
Breaches of Trust
The most offensive part of these charges is the breach of trust placed by the citizens of South Africa and their government. The people, even if they are financially less affected by Seedat’s action, will suffer a loss in confidence and trust.
Ideally, we’d all like to trust individuals who represent us and who are paid to protect us, but how can we do so when huge breaches of trust occur?
One potential solution includes using lie detection technology to root out corrupt financial officers. New developments like EyeDetect™ can be used in place of or in conjunction with standard polygraph tests.
EyeDetect can help detect deception with a simple, non-intrusive test that poses a series of true or false statements. The subject is asked to answer truthfully and if deception occurs, it’s recorded by an optical scanner and the results given in a report afterward. Field tests show this unique technology has an 85 percent accuracy.
Such technology can help protect the people by allowing officials to identify those in positions of trust… who cannot be trusted.