Staff of MPS on Monday, 10th December 2018 came together to mark the International Anti- Corruption Day with the aim of raising awareness on Corruption and to promote integrity and transparency in all spheres of business activities. This year’s day was celebrated under the theme “THE POWER OF PEOPLE’S PRESSURE”
Cyrille Lemee, Head of Transition, welcomed the crowed and introduced the concept of the Ethics Policy and what it means in the course of Business. Cyrille elaborated on the principals that define what is right or wrong that enables the individuals to take the good decision in a given situation. “the Ethics is not specific to Businesses; it’s everyone’s business and Business Ethics is Ethics applied to business activities” he said.
From there Frank Ebo Brown, The Head of Legal, took to the floor engaging the audience to focus on several topics including; Compliance, the stakes of being compliant and on the implemented policies and programs aimed at achieving this objective. Frank took the gathering through what amounts to corruption, its impact as well as ways to tackle the menace. He pointed out that corruption not only distorts economic growth, creates unequal conditions in the rules that apply to trade and investment but increases costs for companies and affects everyone.
Employees then looked at case studies during which they had to analyse a situation from a compliance perspective to take the good decision including possible scenarios and how to deal with them in their respective areas of work. Answering some questions from employees, Frank emphasized on the need for employees to focus on providing their services in the most ethical manner without compromising on the company’s code of conduct as this will attract the applicable consequences.
He encouraged them to not look at the present when faced with situations that may lead to corrupt acts. “Look at the bigger picture, 4 to 5 years from now, how the action you committed will affect you and others around you. There are several families who are suffering because their bread winners were offered and accepted gifts for favours that turned out to have corrupt implications.”
Frank stressed that “with your knowledge of a violation of our policies, it is your responsibility to report either to your hierarchy or using our whistle blowing system.” And also assured confidentiality of whistle-blowers, per the Laws of Ghana, and therefore they will be protected from any form of retaliation. Perpetrators will be subject to disciplinary measures up to termination of employment. Accordingly any MPS employee who has been approached or has any information about proposed improper payments or potential violations must promptly report such information to Management by using the MPS Alert channel firstname.lastname@example.org .
In conclusion, The MPS CEO, Mohamed Samara, reflected on the event purpose and the discussions.The CEO highlighted that Compliance is not an option, Compliance is mandatory!Compliance is not only aiming at satisfying our stakeholders’ expectations, but non-compliance may have severe consequences on our company, its representatives and employees as well as our families.
The CEO added that while it takes a lifetime to build a reputation it takes 5 minutes to ruin it. Such behaviours could make us loose our clients, lead to the collapse of company and make us loose our jobs.
We went through our compliance policies and program and highlighted what is at stake. We reviewed examples of the criminal offenses such as the Human Trafficking, Corruption, Transport Security, Health & Safety, Competition, Sanctions, Environment, Diversity etc. including the consequential impact on the perpetrators, their families,the company, the society and the country we live in and reached to a joint commitment that:
“We do not take part in unfair competition practices”
“We do not make transactions with parties subject to sanctions”
“We do not pay nor offer anything of value to unduly obtain or retain business”
“We do not take part in unfair competition practices including cartels aiming at fixing prices, allocating market shares or clients”
It’s taking decisions that are not only driven by immediate profit but take into account our stakeholders’ expectations in view of sustainable and common growth.
The CEO thanked the entire team for the prompt attendance and attention as well as the constructive interaction during the Q&A session and encouraged all to keep the dialog on throughout time.