DBN launches fraud hot-line
The Development Bank of Namibia marked the official launch of its fraud and anti-corruption campaign last week. Mr Paulus Noa, Director of the Anti-Corruption Commission, launched the Development Bank of Namibia (DBN) fraud hot-line. The hot-line is expected to help preempt fraud, but may also be used as a deterrent of fraud.
Talking about fraud and corruption, Paulus Noa said Namibia’s development plans identify good governance and partnership as two fundamental values that Namibia cherishes as a nation. All efforts must work towards ensuring that these values resonate in Namibia’s anti-corruption policies and action plan.
Noa also said that each institution, in both public and private sector must have anti-corruption measures as part of their policies or codes of conduct. In this way, he continued, Namibia shall accelerate the realization of national agenda to address inequality, poverty, hunger and sustainable economic growth. The pre-condition to realize these, is good governance.
Talking about the launch of the fraud line, DBN CEO Martin Inkumbi said that the Bank’s governance system makes it resilient to potential breaches of integrity.
Inkumbi said that the Bank has translated broad statements of corporate philosophy and principles of governance into operational mechanisms that make abuse of DBN resources extremely difficult.
He said the first line of active prevention lies in the Bank’s rigorous and detailed =examination of applications for finance. This he said included verification of collateral, credit checks, viability of business plans, realism of cash-flow projections, company registrations under various legislation, composition of shareholders and composition of management.
Motivating the Bank’s due diligence on all applications, Inkumbi said DBN holds itself accountable for its development impact, so the Bank ensures that use of its pool of finance achieves the best possible impact by selecting for finance those projects which are expected achieve the best possible results.
Inkumbi added that various functions within the Bank monitor borrowing to ensure that funds made available by the Bank are not diverted to other purposes.
Inkumbi said that the Bank’s committee system was a particular deterrent to fraud, as no one individual is entrusted with a single decision. Inkumbi noted that three committees assess each application: lending, risk, and credit. Each committees is composed of several experts. All aspects of due diligence inform the Bank’s committees, and if a detail is missing, unclear, or unsatisfactory the application will be returned by the committee concerned. Once all committees have given a favourable report on the application for finance, the recommendation is passed to the Board of the Development Bank who then take a collective decision.
Inkumbi stated that by opening the fraud hot-line, the Bank is clearly stating that it will not accept attempts to subvert the Bank’s governance due diligence, processes, values and operations. The Development Bank of Namibia, Inkumbi added, stands by its slogan that good business is good for development, and fraud is definitely not good business at all.
Furthermore he said that the Bank will investigate reports of fraud and take action when it finds evidence that fraud has occurred.