PHL’s anti-graft drive scattered says expert

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BAGUIO CITY – The national government’s anti-graft and corruption campaign remains erratic and scattered that is why the country remains to be one of the top corrupt countries in the global village, a public administration and local governance expert said here Thursday.

Dr. Alex Brillantes, Jr., a Commissioner of the Commission on Higher Education (CHED), was one of the speakers during the Regional Conference on the Bangsamoro Basic Law and Cordillera Autonomy which was recently held at the Baguio Convention Center.

Brillantes disclosed that to date, the national government has a more or less 70 investigating bodies and prosecuting arms on anti-graft and corruption that significantly affects a supposed consolidated effort to rid the bureaucracy of officials involved in graft and corruption.

Furthermore, the CHED official revealed there are 65 agencies involved in the conduct of investigation of public officials involved in graft and corrupt practices which now creates overlapping of functions among those involved.

“We cannot understand and predict the government’s campaign on graft and corruption because of the numerous layers involved in the investigation and the prosecution,” Brillantes stressed.

Instead of fastracking the investigation and prosecution of graft and corruption cases, Brillantes said the involvement of numerous agencies and personalities create more problems than solutions that is why the investigation process takes a lot of time until the complainants are no longer interested to pursue the cases.

With around 70 prosecuting bodies and 65 investigating agencies, Brillantes cited the result is that the Philippines remains to be one of the most corrupt countries in the world which should not be the case.

While the Aquino administration has done quite well in the campaign against graft and corruption, he cited similar efforts must be pursued by the next administration to send the message to corrupt officials that they have no place in the bureaucracy.

If the next administration will not take a hardline stand against graft and corruption, the CHED official cited the country will remain as one of the most countries in the world, an identity which should not be used as a tag for Filipinos.

According to him, one of the problems that emerged in the government’s anti-graft and corruption campaign is that allies of the administration are somewhat being exempted while identified critics of the administration are the ones being charged and publicly tried for offenses that have not yet been proven by the courts.

Brillantes underscored graft and corruption in the bureaucracy can only be permanently eradicated of people running the affairs of government will start the campaign in themselves and then contaminating their families and fellow government officials and employees, thus, it all bois down to the values of the people and their heart to service and not to be served.

He cited the importance of teaching the young people the proper values in life so that they will be able to carry on the legacy of the country being a graft free country in the future which will be one of the significant gains of grassroots value formation for the people.

By Dexter A. See

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