GTP: Govt continues to strengthen efforts to cut corruption

(Bernama) KUALA LUMPUR: The government will continue to strengthen its efforts through more serious and effective measures in 2011 to eradicate corruption in Malaysia.

Minister in the Prime Minister’s Department Datuk Seri Mohamed Nazri Abdul Aziz said although it was on the right path, the government could not be complacent and would step up efforts towards achieving targets and objectives under the Fighting Corruption National Key Result Area (NKRA).

Increases in several scores under the Corruption Perception Index (CPI) which are the Global Competetiveness Yearbook (IMD), World Competetiveness Report (WEF) and survey in the Asian Intelligence Newsletter (PERC) are indicators that the government is on the right track, he said in the 2010 Government Transformation Programme (GTP) Annual Report published by the Prime Minister’s Department.

This year, the government would like to interact with the public to gauge their perception and attitude towards corruption and increase their awareness on the measures taken to eradicate corruption.

Mohamed Nazri said besides that, several changes were carried out towards the National Key Perfomance Indicator (NKPI) to make it more relevant to initiatives throughout 2010.

He said another NKPI to be introduced is the number of cases reported under the Whistleblower Protection Act 2010 legislated on Dec 15, 2010.

The act aims to encourage whistleblowers to come forward with reports of improper conduct by granting them protection of the identity, immunity from criminal or civil liability as well as protection against any detrimental action taken against them.

“We will monitor the effectiveness of implementing the act…therefore the percentage of cases investigated and the percentage of cases closed will also be looked at,” he said.

Also measured is the initiative to set up compliance units in each enforcement agency.

Last year, five main enforcement agenices set up compliance units and sent their officers to be centrally trained by the Malaysian Anti-Corruption Academy.

Among the approaches and efforts implemented to fight crimes already carried out was the introduction of the MACC’s Name-and-Shame online database which highlights the names, pictures, identity card numbers, and case details of convicted offenders, of which 284 names were listed end of last year surpassing the target list of 84 offenders.

Besides that, Mohamed Nazri said that a culture of intolerance to corruption supported by a robust whistleblower framework is an important initiative and big achievement in 2010.

He said the Myprocurement website was launched to reflect the government’s commitment to transparency and lists over 3,500 government contracts as well as advertised or awarded tenders, dates and values of the contracts as well as winners of tenders.

To speed up trial of corruption cases within one year compared to the average time of eight and a half years identified in 2009 for trial and appeals, the government planned to create 14 Corruption Sessions Courts and four Corruption High Courts in 2010.

Besides that, enforcement agencies also used technology to fight corruption by installing closed-circuit television cameras (CCTV) in Customs and Immigration hotspot locations to ensure their officers follow procedure and enforce the law. – Bernama