This extensively researched and coherently written piece of scholarship ought to be widely consulted by scholars and practitioners seeking to combat money laundering (ML) in Africa. The book may not have addressed theoretical issues that emphasize its core arguments. However, its analyses of politically exposed persons (PEPs) and the extent to which national constitutions may aid or forestall money laundering tactics contribute to the understanding of how African countries (ACs) can strategize to combat ML via PEPs.
Existing policy and academic literature recognise PEPs as government officials or royal families, including their close associates or family members. Such recognition is largely due to historical and recent case studies that demonstrate their involvement in high-level ML cases. Hatchard exemplifies this with the Cashgate Case where, between 2009–2014, government ministers and senior public officials in Malawi manipulated the government’s payment control system and laundered proceeds amounting to over $365 million. Cashgate demonstrates the extent to which PEPs can abuse their office to loot funds from state coffers. Similarly, investigation shows that South Africa’s former President Jacob Zuma had worked with close associates – the Gupta Family – to launder and divert state funds. Zuma’s case, amongst many others, shows that close associates are not exempted from the PEPs classification.
Cite as: Nkechikwu Valerie Azinge-Egbiri, Book Review - Combating Money Laundering in Africa: Dealing with the Problem of PEPs, Edward Elgar, by John Hatchard, 2020, pages 277. 100. ISBN 9781789905298, Volume 2, AfJIEL, (2021), 161-164.