Determinants and impediments of whistle-blowing in local government councils: A case study of the South-East District Council, Botswana

Abiodun M.T. Omotoye


This article investigates the perceptions of public service employees regarding the role of whistle-blowing in local government. Whistle-blowing has received increased attention and support as a means of detecting and correcting wrongdoing in organisations. Yet, as this case study discusses, the absence of whistle-blower protection measures and fear of reprisal and job loss deter potential witnesses from reporting wrongdoing in the workplace. A mixed research method approach was employed to undertake the study. A self-administered questionnaire was distributed to public servants employed within the South-East District Council (SEDC) and literature related to corruption and whistle-blowing was reviewed. The findings indicate that public service employees strongly support the role whistle-blowing has to play in curbing corruption in the workplace, particularly if the corrupt activity could potentially threaten people’s lives and suppress social justice. However, the absence of whistle-blower protection measures was cited as the most significant impediment to reporting wrongdoing. The article proposes the need for the SEDC to adopt effective policies and procedures that place a strong emphasis on providing protection for employees to disclose misconduct and fraudulent conduct.


Whistleblowing Determinants; Botswana

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Submitted: 28 August 2017
Published: 21 November 2017

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Africa’s Public Service Delivery and Performance Review    |    ISSN: 2310-2195 (PRINT)    |    ISSN: 2310-2152 (ONLINE)