Joe Biden should follow the U.K. in banning the global management consultancy firm Bain & Company from future government contracts, a Labour Party member of the U.K. House of Lords, peer Peter Hain has said.
In a letter shared with the Guardian, the former minister and anti-apartheid campaigner urged the U.S. president to “act on this matter and establish a clear precedent that will signal to all U.S. global companies, consultancies, lawyers, auditors and financial advisers that collusion with corrupt politicians and their business cronies in other countries will not be tolerated.”
In August Bain was barred from tendering for U.K. government contracts for three years over its “grave professional misconduct” in state corruption in South Africa. Britain became the first western country to take this step, after pressure from Lord Hain.
The U.K. government’s decision came after the findings of two independent judicial commissions of inquiry in South Africa. One of them, the Zondo commission, concluded in January that there had been “collusion” between the consultancy and the former South African president Jacob Zuma to reshape entire sectors of the economy.
The commission found that between 2012 and 2015, Bain helped draw up plans to “seize and restructure” the South African Revenue Service (Sars) and centralize procurement procedures — changes that the report said would facilitate corruption.
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