Organised crime poses escalating challenges across Africa, as recently revealed by the ENACT Organised Crime Index for Africa 2023. During the launch of the Index on 24 November 2023, the European Union’s Deputy Ambassador to Kenya Ondrej Simek, referenced persistent illicit market within Africa such as human trafficking, cocaine and illicit financial flows, as issues of deep concern. The EU’s commitment to collaborating with African states to combat transnational crime is indeed a priority within the EU-Africa action plan, and the complex issues related to organised crime need to be addressed urgently with concerted efforts, Mr Simek highlighted.
The ENACT Organised Crime Index has increasingly become a fundamental tool for policymaking, empowering researchers, policymakers, and practitioners in making well-informed decisions as was highlighted by Paul-Simon Handy from the Institute for Security Studies. The index also provides comprehensive global intelligence on criminal networks, crucial for understanding threats and strategising impactful measures, as Elizabeth Julio Domingues of INTERPOL emphasised.
The index has three pivotal aspects, which Mark Shaw of the Global Initiative Against Transnational Organized Crime underlined: the role in demystifying organised crime, the rigorous methodologies, and its importance as a tool for both security and political sectors in identifying priorities. The index’s six key findings presented a sobering reality of rising criminal activities, inadequate resilience efforts, the impact of conflict, democratic values in response, the shrinking space of civil society, and the unique challenges faced by Africa.
Confronting the multifaceted challenges of the surge in organised crime in Africa requires collaborative efforts between international organisations, governments, and civil society – the report launch marked a clarion call for such unified action. The insights from the index underscore the necessity for tailored strategies, informed decision-making, and a comprehensive understanding of the evolving dynamics of crime and resilience across the continent. As stakeholders navigate this intricate landscape, the event highlighted the need to work together to curb the growing menace of organised crime in Africa.Africa-OCI-event-flyer