Yesterday, the Enough Project joined 106 other organizations urging the World Bank to take a leadership role in the international community in beneficial ownership transparency.
Beneficial owners are the real people – the living, breathing people – who own or control businesses or bank accounts, although the entity may be listed under another name or corporation.
As the letter explains:
“Often, government contracts are awarded to family members, friends, or associates of the public officials overseeing them. Connected bidders and government officials may disguise their identity or that of their family members or associates behind a front or an anonymous company.”
Specifically, the letter calls on the World Bank to increasing the transparency and accountability by asking for disclosure and open-source publication of the beneficial ownership information of legal-entity bidders on World Bank-funded procurements.
Those who profit off widespread conflict, violence, and human rights abuses all require massive amounts of money to carry out atrocities and fund their operations. By requiring beneficial ownership disclosure and then publishing this information, the Bank would be ending to one of the most common corruption schemes that allows these entities to illegally enrich themselves.