www.transparency.org                                                                                                 www.c...
Overview of Corruption and Anti-Corruption in the PhilippinesPart I: State of Corruption in the                       amou...
Overview of Corruption and Anti-Corruption in the Philippinesparties are perceived to be one of the most corrupt       2. ...
Overview of Corruption and Anti-Corruption in the PhilippinesPrivate companies find petty corruption to be one of         ...
Overview of Corruption and Anti-Corruption in the Philippines     reported having paid a bribe at land service        Part...
Overview of Corruption and Anti-Corruption in the Philippinessegment of the private sector and another from civil    these...
Overview of Corruption and Anti-Corruption in the Philippinesfight against corruption into question. Finally, the     In 1...
Overview of Corruption and Anti-Corruption in the Philippines       the Philippines. The Network began with             • ...
Overview of Corruption and Anti-Corruption in the Philippinesjournalist organizations to dub the Bill an “act of       cap...
Overview of Corruption and Anti-Corruption in the Philippinespoint of contact for allegations of fraud, corruption   that ...
Overview of Corruption and Anti-Corruption in the PhilippinesTI – Global Corruption Report 2009 – PhilippinesSection (Fort...
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  1. 1. www.transparency.org www.cmi.no Overview of Corruption and Anti- Corruption in the PhilippinesQuery:I would like to learn about the situation of corruption and anti-corruption in the Philippines. Withrespect to corruption: what kind of corruption takes place in the country, which sectors are especiallyprone and who are the major actors? With respect to anti-corruption: what are the major anti-corruption activities taking place right now, what are the major programmes, who are the majoractors? Finally, what are donors doing on anti-corruption in the Philippines? Purpose: Summary: I am preparing a country study to explore how we Corruption is a significant obstacle to good can support the Philippines on anti-corruption, governance in the Philippines. A review of recent especially implementation of UNCAC. literature suggests that all levels of corruption, from petty bribery to grand corruption, patronage and Content: state capture, exist in the Philippines at a considerable scale and scope. Significant efforts Part I: State of Corruption in the have been made to combat corruption, which Philippines include putting in place legal and institutional Part 2: State of Anti-Corruption frameworks, as well as efforts by civil society Efforts in the Philippines organisations and the media. Donor agencies are Part 3: Donor Efforts in Combating also actively involved in building capacity to curb Corruption corruption in the Philippines. The success of these Part 4: Further Reading initiatives, however, is far from guaranteed and many observers believe that structural obstacles such as entrenched cronyism continue to undermine anti-corruption efforts.Authored by: Farzana Nawaz, fnawaz@transparency.org and Alfred Bridi, abridi@transparency.org, U4Helpdesk, Transparency InternationalReviewed by: Dieter Zinnbauer Ph.D., Transparency International, dzinnbauer@transparency.orgDate: 17 August 2008 U4 Expert Answers provide targeted and timely anti-corruption expert advice to U4 partner agency staff www.U4.no
  2. 2. Overview of Corruption and Anti-Corruption in the PhilippinesPart I: State of Corruption in the amount has reached up to 10 million pesos perPhilippines donor.Extent and Types of Corruption in the The high cost of elections serves to createPhilippines dependencies on rich campaign contributors, reinforces the power status quo and encouragesCorruption is prevalent in the Philippines. The corruption by politicians once they are in office. Forcountry ranked 141 out of 163 countries in example, it is common for ruling parties to useTransparency International’s (TI) 2008 Corruption government resources to fund re-electionPerceptions Index. A review of related literature campaigns. (Please see: 2008 Global Integrityindicates that corruption can be found at all levels Report - Philippines)of the state apparatus in the Philippines: political /grand corruption, petty / bureaucratic/ As of 2007, an archaic ballot system also createsadministrative corruption, patronage and state ample opportunities for electoral fraud andcapture are all present in different degrees. corruption. At each election cycle voters need to vote for 25 to 30 separate positions and they are 1. Political / grand corruption required to fill in, by hand, the names of all the candidates on a single ballot. These votes are thenAlthough on the surface a thriving democracy with tallied and sent to Manila from local precincts byregular elections, the political system of the election officials. This is a highly laborious processPhilippines is regularly plagued by corruption that is vulnerable to corruption and vote purchasingscandals that involve politicians at all levels – from at many decision points. The most notable recentthe President to members of opposition parties. election scandals involved current president ArroyoAbuse of the political system starts with the who was accused of seeking assistance from anelectoral process and often continues throughout election commissioner to ensure a million votethe entire tenure of politicians. margin in the 2004 presidential race. This scandal led to impeachment proceedings being initiatedElectoral process plagued by corruption against her in the senate. (Please see: Countries at the Crossroads 2007 - Philippines)In the 2007 Countries at the Crossroad survey, thePhilippines scored 3.25 (out of 7, with 0 being the Corruption rampant among elected leadersweakest performance) in the “Free and fair electorallaws and elections” category. Similarly, in the 2008 The Philippines has a long history of corruption inGlobal Integrity Indicators Scorecard of the government - embezzlement of public funds, graftPhilippines, the “elections” category received a and abuse of official power by elected officials is“very weak” rating. (Please see: Countries at the commonplace. A lack of legislative frameworks forCrossroads 2007 - Philippines and 2008 Global strengthening political parties has led to a partyIntegrity Report - Philippines) system dominated by personalities and patronage. Another factor that fuels corruption is the lack ofWhile, by law, all citizens are allowed to participate legal requirements for financial audit of politicalequally in the political process, the exorbitant cost party expenditures. (Please see: National Integrityof running a political campaign ensures that System Assessment - Philippines)average citizens are not able to run for politicaloffice and elections are often won by whoever can These findings are also reflected in publicmobilise the highest amount of financial support. By perceptions of corruption in the political partylaw there are no caps on the amount of personal system – TI’s 2009 Global Corruption Barometerdonations to candidates and parties, and news (GCB), a large-scale household survey thatarticles on campaign contributions show that the assesses general public attitudes toward and experience with corruption, found that politicalwww.U4.no 2
  3. 3. Overview of Corruption and Anti-Corruption in the Philippinesparties are perceived to be one of the most corrupt 2. Patronage and State Captureinstitutions by the Philippine people. (Please see:Transparency International’s 2009 Global According to a recent Freedom House report, theCorruption Barometer) electoral process in the Philippines privileges the dispensing of patronage over the delivery of goodIn his 14 year rule from 1972 to 1986, former governance and limits the ability of voters topresident Ferdinand Marcos and his family are demand accountability from elected officials.alleged to have stolen between 5 and 10 billion US (Please see: Countries at the Crossroads 2007 -dollars worth of state assets. Attempts by the Philippines)subsequent government to recover these assetsgave rise to one of the largest and longest running However, the prevalence of patronage andasset recovery cases in the world with only 658 cronyism is not limited to the political system.million recovered thus far. (Please see: Ferdinand Cronyism continues to be a major factor inMarcos - Basel Asset Recovery Knowledge appointments in many sectors - such as health, theCentre) electoral sector, etc. - and can influence public procurement decisions. (Please see: NationalFollowing the end of Ferdinand Marcos’ reign in Integrity System Assessment - Philippines)1986, it took only a few years for the country toagain be plagued by major corruption scandals and TI’s 2006 National Integrity Survey found thataccusations aimed at high-ranking political officials. systematic capture of the government by theIn 1996, health secretary Hilarion Ramiro was country’s political elite is one of the fundamentalaccused of (and later charged) with attempted obstacles to good governance in the Philippines.bribery and two counts of graft. In 1998, a Senate However, business interests, both indigenous andcommittee investigation found the Public Estates foreign, are also implicated in state capture.Authority guilty of receiving over US $1billion in (Please see: National Integrity Systemkickbacks. In 2001 President Estrada resigned Assessment - Philippines) As mentioned above, aamid a mass public outcry over accusations of lack of financial independence from sponsorscorruption. He was later charged with stealing more during election campaigns can pave the way forthan 4 billion pesos (US $80 billion) of state funds. capture of the state by special interests since(Please see: 2008 Global Integrity Report - campaign contributors often demand a quid pro quoPhilippines) after elections.Current president Gloria Macapagal-Arroyo’s 3. Petty / administrative / bureaucraticgovernment has been accused of corruption almost corruptionfrom its inception. In addition to an electoralscandal in 2004, a large corruption scandal Similar to grand corruption, special access to theconcerning procurement irregularities in a US $329 state apparatus is a major avenue of wealthmillion national broadband project implicated the accumulation for bureaucrats in the Philippines. APresident in 2008. The chairman of the Commission cumbersome bureaucracy, low salaries for civilon Elections (COMELEC) was forced to resign after servants and a complex (and sometimesbeing accused of having offered a 200 million peso contradictory) regulatory regime create numerousbribe to hasten the approval of a deal which was vulnerabilities for rent seeking. In TI’s 2007 Globalwon by Chinese state-owned company, ZTE. Corruption Barometer, the Philippines was found to(Please see: Philippines Country Profile, be among the countries most affected by bribery,Business Anti-Corruption Portal; TI Global with 32% of people surveyed claiming to have paidCorruption Report 2009 (forthcoming)) bribes to access public services. (Please see: Transparency International’s 2007 Global Corruption Barometer)www.U4.no 3
  4. 4. Overview of Corruption and Anti-Corruption in the PhilippinesPrivate companies find petty corruption to be one of the judiciary to be either corrupt or extremelythe biggest obstacles to doing business in the corrupt. On the positive side, the FilipinoPhilippines. According to the SWS 2008 Survey of judiciary has been found in some high profileEnterprises on Corruption, 7 out of 10 companies cases to uphold the rule of law againstwere asked for a bribe in administrative powerful interests: for example, the Supremetransactions. It is also alleged that established Court’s decision in August 2008 to strike downFilipino firms and local family conglomerates are the tentative territorial agreement between theoften favoured when bidding for contracts. (Please government and the Moro Islamic Liberationsee: SWS 2008 Survey of Enterprises on Front (MILF) was a clear vote against President Arroyo. (Please see: Freedom inCorruption 2006 - 2007) the World 2009 – Philippines). The judiciary system itself is also a victim of corruption.Economic reforms - especially those initiated by the According to the World Bank, at least 20% ofRamos administration - attempted to reduce the annual judiciary budget is lost tocorruption by shrinking the role of the state in the corruption, which undermines the capacity toeconomy through privatization, trade liberalization properly administer justice. The Philippinesand deregulation of basic industries such as Centre for Investigative Journalism (PCIJ)telecoms and shipping. However, available data claims that backlogs and congestion problemsindicates that the effectiveness of these reforms is are ‘the biggest stumbling block’ to curbinglimited. The 2009 World Bank / IFC Doing Business corruption due to the snail-paced trial of graftsurvey ranked Philippines as 140 among 181 charges. (Please see: 2006 Nationalcountries in terms of ease of starting a business. Integrity Survey of the Philippines andStarting a business takes 15 procedures and 52 Bertelsmann Transformation Index 2006)days, which is more complicated and time- • Private Sector: Private sector actors areconsuming than in many other countries in the increasingly perceived by the populace asregion. The Philippines also performs poorly in sources of corruption. In TI’s 2009 Globalterms of dealing with construction permits, getting Corruption Barometer, 32% of Filipinoscredit, protection of investors and enforcement of consider the private sector to be either corruptcontracts. (Please see: Doing Business - or extremely corrupt.Philippines). All this creates a business • Media: According to the 2009 GCB, theenvironment with multiple entry points for corruption. media is seen as being either corrupt or extremely corrupt by 12% of Filipinos.Sectors / institutions most prone to Available data on direct experience of corruption with regard to key public services and institutionscorruption shows the following sectors to be particularly corrupt:According to TI’s 2009 GCB, the following sectorsare perceived by the general population of the • Police: TI’s 2009 GCB found that 19% ofPhilippines to be some of the most corrupt: Filipinos who have had contact with the police in 2008 paid a bribe. According to the World Economic Forum Global Competitiveness • Political parties, civil servants and Report 2008-2009, companies are critical of parliament / legislator: These three sectors the polices reliability to protect them from were found to be the most corrupt in the 2009 crime and to respond to crimes committed GCB. 70% of Filipinos perceive political against them. The police are also believed to parties to be corrupt or extremely corrupt. be involved in kidnappings and organised 72% of those surveyed perceive civil servants crime. (Please see: Philippines Country / public officials to be corrupt or extremely Profile, Business Anti-Corruption Portal) corrupt and 68% believe the same to be true for the parliament / legislator. • Land services and registry / permit services: 17% of Filipinos that sought • Judiciary: According to the 2009 GCB, more attention from related public authorities than half of all households surveyed considerwww.U4.no 4
  5. 5. Overview of Corruption and Anti-Corruption in the Philippines reported having paid a bribe at land service Part 2: State of Anti-Corruption agencies in 2008, while 12% reported having Efforts in the Philippines paid a bribe to access registry / permit services. Public Initiatives against Corruption • Education: 10% of Filipinos reported having paid a bribe with regard to education services The Legal Framework in 2008. • Health: According to the 2009 GCB, 7% of Filipinos reported having to pay a bribe to The Philippines has a relatively long history of access medical services. In the health sector, corruption laws, beginning with the Anti-Graft and as a result of decentralization, more Corrupt Practices Act of 1960. Its legislative anti- discretionary power has been given at local corruption structure has been described by the level which has led to the misallocation of 2008 Global Integrity Report as being “very strong”. health funds and kickbacks to mayors and The 1987 constitution also includes specific articles other local government officials. As a result, pertaining to the accountability of public officials. medicine is overpriced by 10-70% and The Office of the Ombudsman recently set up the sometimes even 100%. (Please see: National Anti-Corruption Program of Action Philippines Country Profile, Business Anti- (NACPA) secretariat and in 2006, President Gloria Corruption Portal) Macapagal-Arroyo agreed to fund a 1 billion peso • Tax revenue: 9% of Filipinos reported paying (US$22.1 million) Anti-Corruption Fund to a bribe to tax revenue officials in 2008. accelerate the government’s anti-corruption (Please see: Transparency International’s campaign, increase tax collection, and channel 2009 Global Corruption Barometer) more resources into health care, social services and education.Other sectors that are known to be vulnerable tocorruption in the Philippines include utilities, and The 2007 Anti-Red Tape Act also emphasises thepublic procurement and contracting. According to government’s commitment to fighting corruption inthe Bertelsmann Foundation, lack of transparency bureaucracy. (Please see: Transparencycharacterises public procurement in the Philippines International’s Global Corruption Report 2008)and more than 30% of the budget allocated to Lifestyle checks, as part of a mandatory review ongovernment projects is lost due to corruption. The the assets, liabilities and net worth of allprocess of awarding government contracts for government employees, are also included in theinfrastructure and other public works projects is an constitutional regime against corruption. Theimportant source of extra income for politicians and success of these checks, however, is limited asgovernment officials. Bribes in a typical road they have been unsuccessful in revealing high-levelconstruction contract can amount to as much as government corruption. Some commentators also40% of the contract price. (Please see: Philippines express concerns that these lifestyle checks couldCountry Profile, Business Anti-Corruption). In be carried out as a means of attacking personalJanuary 2009, for example, the World Bank rivals or superiors. (Please see: Countries at thesanctioned seven road construction contractors Crossroads 2007 - Philippines) Further evidencebecause of “collusive practices” in a major project to on the limitations of government efforts to fightupgrade and rehabilitate 870 miles of the country’s corruption is presented in TI’s 2009 GCB:highway network. (Please see: Construction and According to this large-scale household survey 77%Alleged Corruption in the Philippines). of Filipinos believe their government’s anti- corruption efforts to be ‘somewhat ineffective, ineffective or very ineffective. With regard to public procurement, the Government Procurement Act of 2003 established a Government Procurement Policy Board to serve as the central body to develop procurement policy. The use of two observers, one from the relatedwww.U4.no 5
  6. 6. Overview of Corruption and Anti-Corruption in the Philippinessegment of the private sector and another from civil these are not always clear or formally delivered.society, is meant to further the fight against (Please see: 2008 Global Integrity Report -corruption in this area. This provision, however, is Philippines)limited by the fact that, in what the governmentdeems to be emergency situations, procurement is Whistleblowers are not well protected underfree to proceed without observer involvement. Philippine law as the Witness Protection, SecurityMoreover, according to TI’s National Integrity and Benefit Act covers only witnesses and/orSystems Country Study of 2006, this framework complainants, leaving whistleblowers vulnerable.suffers from rigidity as the rules include no Whistle-blowing is not a common practice as thediscretionary mechanisms despite the large negative consequences arising from a lack ofvariations in size and scope of procurement protection acts as a strong deterrent. In practice,contracts. In 2008 President Macapagal-Arroyo’s however, reports by civil servants and private sectorExecutive Order 662-A created the Procurement employees are often submitted anonymously, whichTransparency Group to evaluate, comment on and limits the scope of reported details and makesoversee the procurement of national government follow-up difficult. Whistleblowers have beenagencies. (Please see TI’s forthcoming Global severely denounced in the past: often shunned byCorruption Report 2009). Corruption, however, still colleagues and friends or even resulting in death. Incosts Philippine government procurement 30% of connection to the ZTE scandal, it is alleged thatits allocated budget as reported by the Bertelsmann only media exposure saved the former PhilippineFoundation in 2008. Forest Corporation president, Rodolfo Noel Imperial Lozada, Jr. from being “silenced”. (Please see:The Government Procurement Reform Act and 2008 Global Integrity Report - Philippines)other pieces of legislation address corruptionchallenges related to conflicts of interest. However, The Philippines ratified the United Nationsthe enforcement of this legal framework is not Convention against Corruption in Novemberuniform across all agencies and therefore has 2006. The government has also joined regionallimited the success of this initiative. efforts to combat corruption by endorsing the Asian Development Bank / OECD Anti-CorruptionThough there are no laws protecting citizens’ Initiative for Asia-Pacific in 2001 and it has ratifiedfreedom of information enacted in the Philippines, the UN Convention against Transnationalthe constitution contains “the right of the people to Organized Crime in 2006. (Please see: TI’sinformation on matters of public concern.” The forthcoming Global Corruption Report 2009)speed with which information can be accessed iscontingent upon personal connections within thegovernment and also suffers from a decentralized The Institutional Frameworkgovernment data storage policy.Transparency has also suffered as a result of the The Philippines employs a number of institutionalpolitical pressures on Gloria Macapagal-Arroyo. mechanisms to combat corruption. The degree ofAccess to information has become more difficult independence and effectiveness of these agencies,since 2007 as a result of political pressure on the however, varies greatly.president and the ZTE scandal (Please see aboveand TI’s forthcoming Global Corruption Report 2009 The Presidential Anti-Graft Commission (PAGC)for more on the ZTE affair). Some documents was established in 2001 through Executive Orderconcerning the broadband deal have been No. 12 and supports the president’s and therestricted, which has resulted in government data executive’s fight against corruption. Thebeing generally less accessible to the public. independence of the PAGC is highly questioned asContrary to criminal proceedings, an individual it does not enjoy fiscal autonomy from the state andreceives no government support when he/she it is dependent on the Office of the President for itswishes to dispute an access to information budget. Moreover, the nature of the Commission’scase. Finally, while the Philippine government does organizational structure and its proximity to thegive reasons for its denial of requested information, President puts its role as a legitimate tool in thewww.U4.no 6
  7. 7. Overview of Corruption and Anti-Corruption in the Philippinesfight against corruption into question. Finally, the In 1940, the Commission on ElectionsCommission lacks any capacity to secure (COMELEC) was founded as an independentconvictions and receives a far smaller share of supervisor of elections in the Philippines. Given itsgovernment funding than the Office of the important mandate, it was designed to enjoyOmbudsman. independence and fiscal autonomy. In practice, it has been found that COMELEC does not have theThe Office of the Ombudsman (OMB) was staffing level or the resources to conductcreated in accordance with Article XI of the 1987 investigations and enforce penalties on offendersPhilippine constitution. It enjoys constitutional who breach electoral law, e.g. exceeding theindependence and fiscal autonomy and is the spending limit on election advertisement. Moreover,primary anti-corruption agency in the Philippines. It studies have alleged that up to 93% of COMELECis able to both investigate and prosecute public personnel are politically endorsed (Institute forofficials in the Sandiganbayan, a special court with Political and Electoral Reform). Given the growingjurisdiction to handle graft and corruption cases. number of scandals associated with elections in theThe OMB also organizes campaigns to raise Philippines in this decade, it is not surprising thatawareness for the fight against corruption. COMELEC suffers from a tainted reputation. For example, during the vote-counting stage of theCritics of the OMB highlight its focus on petty 2004 presidential election, the incumbent Presidentcorruption at the expense of larger more senior- Arroyo was caught on tape speaking to thelevel cases. Its long history of inefficiency has also COMELEC Commissioner Virgilio Garcillanotainted its reputation (there were 14,652 cases (known as the “Hello Garci” scandal), furtherawaiting OMB action in 1994 – Freedom House arousing suspicion of foul play. COMELEC is nowCountries at the Crossroads: Philippines 2007) and coming under increased pressure to reform or beanalysts were disappointed in 2006 about the abolished altogether and be replaced by anotherbody’s withdrawal of charges against the body to oversee anti-corruption and transparency inCommission on Elections for an automation elections. (Please see: 2008 Global Integritycontract in 2004. Independence is further Report - Philippines)compromised by the fact that the Ombudsman ispolitically appointed by the president. The currenthead of the OMB is a former law-school classmate Other Anti Corruption Initiativesof the president’s husband. She, MerceditasGutierrez, is now facing calls to resign by locals andCSOs alike. The Coalition against Corruption, Civil Societywhich includes members such as the Makati The Philippines has an active civil society thatBusiness Club (MBC), described her as a “liability in advocates, inter alia, on issues concerning humanthe fight to stamp out corruption" given her alleged rights, social welfare and anti-corruption. CSOs areinactivity as the principal anti-corruption agent. protected by law and are generally free from(Please see: Makati Business Club, anti-graft political oppression at the national level, though atgroup asks businessman to resign) the local level the situation is less secure. While there have been no deaths associated with the fightThe oldest organ to fight corruption is the against corruption, kidnapping, arrests and extra-Commission on Audit (COA), whose beginnings judicial killings of government opposition have notgo as far back as 1900. It deals mainly with the ceased as of 2008. (Please see: 2008 Globalprevention of irregularities in the use of government Integrity Report - Philippines)funds and properties. (Please see: National • The Transparency and AccountabilityIntegrity System Assessment - Philippines) The Network (TAN), founded in NovemberCOA lacks the capacity to prosecute or punish 2000, is a Philippines-based network ofgovernment officials guilty of corruption, but it is multi-sectoral anti-corruption organizations.tasked with uncovering corrupt activities. Its strategy emphasizes the prevention and prosecution of corruption and strives to raise awareness about the problem inwww.U4.no 7
  8. 8. Overview of Corruption and Anti-Corruption in the Philippines the Philippines. The Network began with • The Makati Business Club (MBC) is a 19 founding member organizations and forum of the Philippines’ largest membership has almost doubled since businesses. The MBC discusses public then. policy issues outside of the corporate world, including governance. It is raising • Transparency International Philippines awareness for the fight against corruption is part of the global network of TI chapters. in the Philippines with their Transparent The Philippines chapter conducts Accountable Governance project. The orientation seminars and workshops to website aims to explain the reasons why heighten awareness of anti-corruption corruption exists, the forms which it takes programs, related tools and activities as and its prevalence in Philippine society. well as to promote the United Nations What began with publishing studies, Conventions against Corruption within reports and research surveys, has led to government, the private sector, civil the promotion of good governance in some society and the media. In July 2009 the TI cities of the island of Mindanao. Chapter partnered with UNDP on a Civil Furthermore, MBC initiated the Coalition Service Commission project to “Building on Corruption (CAC) which oversees Integrity for Democratic Governance by sectors such as procurement and Internal Enhancing the Culture of Patriotism and Revenue Allotment. Good Citizenship”. This project is expected to last until December 2011. • Procurement Watch Inc. (PWI) is a The Media Manila-based organization striving to Freedom of expression and press are guaranteed promote accountability, efficiency and in the constitution. The Philippine private media are transparency in Philippine public active and vocal, though a study by the Philippine procurement. Projects include training CSOs’ procurement trainers, observers Center for Media Freedom and Responsibility and monitors which saw 364 people (255 (CMFR) reported “unabashed bias” by the state-run from CSOs and 109 from the government) television stations. The private press, however, has successfully complete the courses as well also been characterized as, at times, being as the Differential Expenditure Efficiency sensationalist. Measurement project which strives to compare the actual and true cost of Many reports describe the Philippines as one of the procurement projects with the goal of most dangerous places in the world for journalists. achieving more transparent prices of As of 2008, there have been 39 journalists killed public procurement projects comparable to during the administration of Gloria Macapagal- those present in a competitive market. Arroyo, accounting for more than half of all journalists killed since 1986 (Please see: • Bantay Lansangan (Road Watch) is an effort to bring together representatives Philippine Press Freedom Report 2008). from various sectors – non-government Although the national authorities have attempted to organizations, private stakeholders as well placate the situation with a police Task Force, as official development partners – to impunity still thrives. The CMFR states that, of the collaborate with the Department of Public journalists killed since 1992, there has been an Works and Highways and promote more impunity rate of 92 percent. Controversially, transparent and efficient practices in the parliamentarians have been drafting the Right of national roads service sector. Projects Reply Bill which states that “any person accused of include “Supporting the Road Partnership a crime or criticized for failings in conduct” is able to (Road Watch) Project” which aims to demand a right of reply from the concerned media oversee and advocate reforms in the source. The punishment for not replying comes in Philippine roads sector. the form of severe fines, imprisonment and censorship which has led certain Philippinewww.U4.no 8
  9. 9. Overview of Corruption and Anti-Corruption in the Philippinesjournalist organizations to dub the Bill an “act of capacity for investigation and prosecution for Anti–terrorism against the media.” (Please see: Money Laundering in judicial and law enforcementReporters without Borders – Philippines) agencies and civil society. The United States Agency for InternationalPart 3: Donor Efforts to Combat Development (USAID) works towards makingCorruption government procurement more transparent, adopting the Integrity Development Review; It seeks to promote more transparent andMulti-lateral development banks such as the Asian accountable management at the BIR; works onDevelopment Bank (ADB), the European Bank for strengthening relations between the judiciary andReconstruction and Development (EBRD), the media and promotes Rule of Law EffectivenessInternational Monetary Fund (IMF) and the World (ROLE) through workshops and training sessionsBank issued a joint statement in 2006 that commits for courts of appeal and prosecutors.them to fight corruption by standardizing definitions,improving investigative rules and procedures, The UNDP works with the Philippine Nationalimproving information sharing and ensuring Police (PNP) to establish a more capable, effectivecompliance and enforcement. A task force has also and credible work force at the PNP. It also worksbeen established to issue bi-monthly reports on towards enhancing capacities of oversight agenciesprogress made on these goals. for change management and bureaucratic reformsBilateral donors are mainstreaming anti-corruption which complements the efforts of the Presidentialelements into their programmes to ensure aid Committee on Effective Governance (PCEG).delivery effectiveness. The Canadian InternationalDevelopment Agency (CIDA) established the The World Bank supports one of the largestBureau of Internal Revenue (BIR) Call Centre numbers of anti-corruption and governance projectsSystems; supports a project promoting the in the Philippines. It has invested in judicial and civilgovernment’s electronic procurement system service reform, media freedom and initiatives to(GEPS); reviews and consolidates the Bureau of reduce corruption risks in Bank projects. It alsoCustoms (BOC) rules and regulations nationwide supports the Philippine government’s Procurementand supports workshops on guidelines and inter- Policy Board Mapping capacity of internal auditagency coordination in fighting corruption. units in each agency nationwide; judicial reform projects and education in corporate governance forThe Australian Agency for International boards of directors.Development (AUSAID) works on enhancingefficiency and accountability in trial courts; provides The ADB’s anti-corruption policy has been deemedtraining for Supreme Court and appellate justices, exemplary because of its focus on monitoring andcourt administrators and presiding executive judges. evaluation, update cycles and public consultation,It has also developed an automated audit tool to outreach and enforcement. For example, toenhance the Public Accountability Programme of increase public consultation, comments on the anti-the Philippine Commission on Audit. corruption guidelines are invited online. The ADB has established an Oversight Committee that determines whether parties to ADB-financed activityThe European Commission (EC) supports the have failed to comply with the Anti-CorruptionEU-OMB Corruption Prevention Project; works on Policy and in cases of non-compliance determinesstrengthening the Anti–Money Laundering Council sanctions, such as reprimands and debarment.by providing training; assists the judiciaryprogramme Access to Justice for the poor and The ADB works with the Office of Auditor General,supports the EU-OMB corruption prevention project Integrity Division (OAGI) to protect and maintaincomponent, Winning the Cooperation of the Wider confidentiality of whistleblowers. Staff membersPublic; assists Graft and Corruption Prevention who fear reprisals can request an administrativeEducation (GCPE) teaching exemplars and builds review. The OAGI is also designated as the initialwww.U4.no 9
  10. 10. Overview of Corruption and Anti-Corruption in the Philippinespoint of contact for allegations of fraud, corruption that exists to fight it. In doing so, it explains the keyand abuse among ADB-financed projects. (Please corruption scandals to have recently hit the islands,see: 2006 National Integrity Survey on the analyses anti-corruption efforts as well as thePhilippines) The Asian Development Bank also country’s legal framework in relation tocollaborates with the OECD Anti-Corruption transparency and corruption.Initiative for Asia-Pacific, which the government ofthe Philippines has joined. UNHCR – Freedom in the World 2009 This article offers a chronological explanation andThe government of the Philippines and international analysis of recent corruption developments anddonors collaborate to form the Philippine scandals in the Philippines. It also discusses theDevelopment Forum (PDF), a consultative group legal framework surrounding freedom of informationestablished to act as a mechanism to facilitate and reports on the degrading state of affairs forpolicy dialogue about the Philippines’ development journalists reporting in the country.agenda. A PDF Working Group on Governance andAnti-Corruption focuses on governance reform, National Integrity System Assessment –such as public expenditure management, Philippines, 2006performance management and public service This report offers a detailed explanation anddelivery. The related anti-corruption reforms focus analysis of the state of corruption as well as anti-on the areas of investigation, prosecution and corruption efforts in the following sectors: thespeedy trials, prevention and education – which is executive, legislature, political parties, electoralin line with the National Anti-Corruption Plan of commission, judiciary, law enforcement agencies,Action. public procurement, ombudsman, public anti- corruption agencies, the media, and civil society.(Please see: National Integrity SystemAssessment - Philippines) 2008 Global Integrity Report - Philippines This report offers a complete overview of the state of corruption in the Philippines. It includes aPart 4: Further Reading corruption timeline of the past 20+ years as well as detailed answers to questions concerning civilBusiness Anti-Corruption Portal Philippines society, public information, the media, elections,Country Profile 2009 government accountability, procurementThis country profile gives background information procedures, whistle blowing, oversight, regulation,concerning the political climate in the Philippines, anti-corruption laws and legal enforcement.corruption in the business sector, regulation efforts Social Weather Stations - 2008 Survey ofto fight corruption, a sector-by-sector summary of Enterprises on Corruptionkey public institutions, as well as an overview of This survey offers a sector-by-sector scorecard ofpublic and private anti-corruption efforts. 30 government agencies in terms of sincerity in fighting corruption as well as Filipino businessCentre for Media Freedom and Responsibility – associations.Philippine Press Freedom Report 2008This report explains the legal framework TI – Global Corruption Barometer 2009surrounding freedom of the press, the successes The Global Corruption Barometer is a survey thatand failures of the witness protection movement, assesses general public attitudes towards anddiscusses the ways in which the media can combat experience of corruption. The Barometer includes,corruption in the press and gives an overview of for instance, both a general and a sector by sectorkillings and other attacks on journalists in 2008. overview of perceived corruption, bribing and its perceived effectiveness as well as the behaviour ofFreedom House Countries at the Crossroads a public official following a bribe.2007This paper reviews the extent of corruption in thePhilippines as well as the institutional frameworkwww.U4.no 10
  11. 11. Overview of Corruption and Anti-Corruption in the PhilippinesTI – Global Corruption Report 2009 – PhilippinesSection (Forthcoming)This report is an annual assessment of the state ofcorruption in the Philippines with a focus on thelegal and institutional changes in the past yearpertaining to corruption, the Philippine privatesector and corruption. It explains the recent majorcorruption scandals to hit the islands – the ZTEbroadband scandal – and the allegations andinquiry surrounding the Northrail Project andPhilippine contracting.www.U4.no 11

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