Tuesday, January 02, 2007

Palace graft body to suspend 5 corrupt execs a month

Gil C. Cabacungan Jr. Inquirer
MANILA – The Presidential Anti-Graft Commission (PAGC) says it plans to suspend at least five corrupt officials every month in 2007 as part of its intensified crackdown on corruption.

The PAGC said it will also reward government agencies that get high marks in its "anti-corruption scorecard."

“We look forward to the coming year as a period of building further on PAGC’s achievements in the past year, to really drive our message across that this government will leave no stone unturned to substantially reduce, if not to totally eradicate, corruption,” said PAGC Chairperson Constancia de Guzman in a press statement.

In its attack plan for 2007, the PAGC said it aims to resolve at least two cases each week or 10 per month at most.

To meet its 2007 goals, the PAGC said the capacity of its investigators would be enhanced through additional training and through sharing of information and coordination in the conduct of surveillance with the Anti-Money Laundering Council, the National Bureau of Investigation and the Philippine National Police-CIDG.

"We want to ensure that corruption will indeed be a high-risk, low-reward activity,"said De Guzman.

The agency also plans to create an anti-corruption scorecard that will gauge how well agencies are faring in the campaign. The Department of Budget and Management has shown interest in the proposal and may use the scorecard in budget allocation to reward agencies actively implementing anti-corruption plans, according to De Guzman.

The PAGC will conduct so-called "visioning and missioning" workshops with Cabinet secretaries to ensure that they implement anti-corruption strategies in their departments.

The PAGC plans to tap a P1 billion anti-corruption fund from President Gloria Macapagal-Arroyo for its 2007 program.

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