The African Dream: Creating Connections Where it Matters


The African Dream: Creating Connections Where it Matters
By Jaco de Jager, CFE
CEO, ACFE South Africa Chapter

If you spill water, it flows out and touches everything in the surrounding area. So does fraud. It doesn’t matter how high up it happens, fraud affects everyone around it eventually. The ACFE South Africa Chapter recently had our annual African Fraud Conference on 17-20 September in South Africa. These events exist so that we, as fraud fighters, can come together to share the challenges we face in eradicating fraud and communicate with each other on how to overcome these issues.  

At the conference, we try our best to spread the importance of integrity and positivity, because when dealing with fraud it is important to, “Listen with curiosity. Speak with honesty. Act with integrity. The greatest problem with communication is we don’t listen to understand. We listen to reply. When we listen with curiosity, we don’t listen with the intent to reply. We listen for what’s behind the reply.” This specific quote by Roy T. Bennet explains what we as fraud examiners attempt to achieve when we investigate.

More than 900 attendees from 23 different countries made this the largest and most successful ACFE event that has taken place in Africa. Cybercrime was our main theme and our presenters didn’t disappoint. They regaled us with their knowledge and expertise, and we received 85% positive rating from our delegates this year, especially regarding our keynote speakers Gert van der Linde, Adv. Andy Mothibi, Minister Michael Masutha and Zanele Mxunyelwa. Each keynote speaker had their own style, but all of them to captured the attention of their audience with their powerful statements and presence. 


This quote by Brian Tracy perfectly describes the intent of the ACFE South Africa Chapter. We try our best to show that “true success in life begins only when you make the commitment to become excellent at what you do.” Excellence is what we strive for and after each of our conferences we get a step closer to achieving this goal.

International Fraud Awareness Week takes place 12-18 November 2017. We have six out of nine regions participating this year, so we are anticipating a full week of fraud-related events. This is when the private and public sectors can fully come together to show the population that we are busy fighting fraud and we acknowledge its existence. We need to make sure everybody understands the impact of fraud, and that even though it’s happening at the top, it will eventually trickle down to the general public.