Strengthening Tanzania’s capacity to investigate corruption in infrastructure projects and procurement

Procurement fraud and corruption are amongst the primary sources of corrupt income around the globe, and Tanzania is no exception in suffering from their disastrous effects. Following a recent report from the Public Procurement Regulatory Authority (PPRA) of Tanzania that revealed that multiple projects handled by public institutions were tainted with corruption, the Prevention and Combating of Corruption Bureau (PCCB) was urged to initiate investigations into these projects.

Within that local context, experts from the Basel Institute on Governance’s International Centre for Asset Recovery (ICAR) conducted a 5-day training programme on “Investigating Corruption in Infrastructure Projects and Procurement” in Dar es Salaam, Tanzania from 21 – 25 May 2018. The workshop was funded by the Swiss Agency for Development and Cooperation through the Swiss Embassy in Tanzania. It was attended by 24 participants, mostly investigators and prosecutors from the PCCB but also from the Financial Intelligence Unit of Tanzania, the Tanzania Police Force, the Office of the Director of Public Prosecutions, the Zanzibar Anti-corruption and Economic Crimes Authority and the PPRA.

As part of the training, the participants conducted a complex simulated investigation which exposed them to the common types of fraud and corruption schemes in public procurement such as kickbacks, collusion, and bid-rigging. They were challenged to rethink their investigative approach and to identify the relevant criminal offences that could be used while dealing with such cases.

One PPCB prosecutor commented that “the training was very helpful” and that he “was confident that [they] are going to change the way they conduct procurement investigations.”