Corruption Watch defines corruption and bribery following the Fifa scandal

Following the recent Fifa corruption scandal, CapeTalk/702’s Redi Tlhabi sought clarity from callers and the Corruption Watch Executive Director on what constitutes a bribe.

It is reported that high ranking Fifa officials allegedly received bribes amounting to R1.8 billion and have been charged with racketeering, fraud and money laundering, among other offences.

South Africa has also been implicated in the Fifa corruption scandal and the Minister of Sports, Fikile Mbalula, and South African Football Association (Safa) boss, Danny Jordaan, both admit that a payment of $10 million (about R120 million) went to Fifa. However, they say it did not constitute a bribe, but a donation to the African Diaspora Legacy programme.

Redi Tlhabi spoke to David Lewis, Executive Director at Corruption Watch, about bribery and corruption.

It’s a statutory defined crime. The standard legal definition of a bribe is the giving or the soliciting of something valuable to influence the decision of a person who has a public or legal duty to carry out. Clearly Jack Warner had a legal duty. Looking at the nature of the world cup - and Warner's public duty - that element of the definition is satisfied. I want to underline that the money doesn’t have to even change hands …

David Lewis

According to Lewis, the time in which the money was paid was irrelevant. He further said that the act of giving a gift to influence decisions is considered a bribe; and that a bribe is not always in the form of money.

Lewis says that there was no reason for South Africa to pay the money. South Africa should’ve exposed Fifa for its corrupt shenanigans, he said. Lewis described Fifa as a global criminal syndicate.

Here are some of the twitter comments on the topic:

Listen to the full conversation below:

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