Madam Margaret Jackson, a Managing Partner of Rainbow Consult, a management consulting firm, has called on private businesses to improve upon internal corporate ethics and also do away with all forms of corruption.
She said Ghanaian businesses should strive to be in compliance and obey the various national and traditional laws, regulations and seek to attain the expected standards.
She said this on Wednesday at an event organised by the Ghana National Chamber of Commerce and Industry (GNCCI), the Rainbow Consult and the Centre for International Private Enterprise (CIPE).
Speaking on the theme: "Business Ethics and Integrity: Addressing Corruption Risk in Ghana", Madam Jackson said it is high time the private sector in the country look more into the ethics of anti-corruption, adding that statistics showed an increase of about 10 per cent in cost of businesses due to corruption in the private sector.
She said statistics also revealed that there was a 12 per cent loss due to internal frauds because many businesses usually ignore internal frauds as they are unable to measure it adding that, no innovations could be made when an organisation suffers such a percentage of loss in revenue.
She said many businesses have collapsed because they did not learn about the structures that have been put in place.
Madam Jackson said ensuring compliance and adopting anti-corruption measures would help boost the operations of firms and also position the entity to be more competitive in the global market space.
Madam Jackson said anti-corrupt firms get attracted to ethically-minded investors hence the need to increase their potential, in that regard, to attract more investment.
She said to avoid the proliferation of corruption at the workplace, leadership through an executive decision must push for ethics to be instilled by establishing a compliance system within the firm.
On his part, Nana Dr Appiagyei Dankwawoso I, the President of GNCCI, said the private sector usually did not pay attention to anti-corruption measures in their corporate practices and called on them to rise to the task and guarantee their sustainability.
He said it is time the private sector took an interest in dealing with corruption in their businesses because government is also taking steps to deal with corruption in the public sector through the establishment of the Special Prosecutor's Office.
Nana Dr Dankwawoso I said measures such as the Public Procurement Act, 2003 (Act 663) have been instituted for businesses to comply with but adhering to it has become a major challenge for many private businesses managers.
Mr Ken Thompson, the Chief Executive Officer of Dalex Finance, said the company has survived the turmoil in the financial sector because of efforts at anti-corruption compliance, adding that "we are an evidence that anti-corruption is good for your bottom line as a financial business".
He said the true cost of corruption was the decaying infrastructure all over the rural and urban areas saying: "We are living on past glory. We have now borrowed over 40 billion US Dollars and yet we have very little to show for it except overpasses and gated communities amongst others," he said.
He said a clean organisation is the one that is honest, truthful with both employees and customers, treats stakeholders with respect and values reputations.