An independent group of global leaders working together for peace and human rights known as The Elders has welcomed the International Anti-Corruption Summit taking place in London.
The group comprise of South African late icon who is also the Founder, President Nelson Mandela; Graca Machel; Ela Bhatt; former U.S. President Jimmy Carter and former U.N. Secretary General Kofi Annan among others.
The group urged countries to back their verbal commitments with concrete actions.
“Corruption is blight on countries’ development and destroys peoples’ faith in their systems of governance and wider public institutions,” the group said in a statement.
“It impoverishes nations where millions of people already live in abject poverty, and it also damages the social fabric of countries where the embezzled money is laundered or invested.”
Annan commenting on the summit taking place in London said only a concerted international approach can tackle the endemic problem of corruption.
“All leaders need to show responsibility and tackle corruption when it occurs in their countries and set an example of personal probity. States and governments must analyse honestly how their own legal, financial and political systems facilitate corrupt practices, and take steps to address the problem,” he said.
“It is time to close all the tax loopholes and move to genuinely transparent and credible financial regulations, so those who engage in corruption know there is no place to hide and no immunity for their criminal acts."
Speaking at the end of their board meeting in London, The Elders join the Africa Progress Panel in urging governments at the London summit to agree and make sustained efforts to fight corruption and show transparency.