I. Pambungad

Parang libag na nakakapit  sa balat ng lahing Pilipino ang suliranin ng korupsyon, dahil sa tindi at lalim ng pagkakakapit nito sa ating kasaysayan.

Tinatantyang hindi bababa sa 30 % ng national budget ang taun-taong nawawala sa korupsyon. Batay dito, P548 billion pesos (approximately US $ 12.66 billion) ang inaasahang makakain ng ating 2011 budget na P1.645T (approximately US$ 37.98 billion). (http://www.pctc.gov.ph/papers/graft.htm)

Noong 2010, ikaapat ang Pilipinas sa pinaka-korupt sa 16 bansa sa Asia ayon sa survey na isinagawa ng Political and Economic Risk Consultancy (PERC), LTD. batay sa corruption perception index (CPI), bilang sukat ng mga nawalang pagkakataon sa pag-unlad.

( http://www.abs-cbnnews.com/nation/03/11/10/palace-downplays-perc-survey)

Sa pangkalahatan, korupt ang Pilipinas batay sa pambansa at pandaigdigang opinyon at may kaisahan na walang kakayanan ang bansa para malunasan ang suliraning ito.

II. Kasaysayan ng korupsyon sa Pilipinas

Ang korupsyon sa ating bansa ay naka-ugat sa ating kasaysayan.

Bago dumating ang mga kastila

Hindi kilala ang gutom at korupsyon sa mga maliliit na komunidad ng mga naunang settlers sa ating bansa pati na rin sa mga mini-estado na pinamunuhan ng datu bago dumating ang mga kastila.

Nang mapailalim tayo sa mga kastila

Nang mapailalim tayo sa mga kastila, naging tanggap na pamamalakad ang pangangamkam ng mga gobernador-heneral, at hinayaan ito ng mga auditor na nag-audit sa kanila basta’t

-       nabigyan sila ng lagay

-       kumilala ng hangganan ang gobernador-heneral at hindi naging sugapa sa antas na mabigyan ng dahilan ang mamayang Pilipino mag -aalsa

Nang mapailalim tayo sa US

Ang mga Pilipinong sumuporta at naki-collaborate sa US nang tayo’y sakupin nito ay nabigyan ng mga ispesyal na mga pabor na umunlad sa pagiging pribelihiyadong uri. Sa pamamagitan ng pagsuporta nila sa pagsasabatas ng mga hindi pantay na kasunduan tulad ng Payne-Aldrich Act na na nagpahintulot ng malayang kalakalan sa pagitan ng US at Pilipinas mula 1909-1946.

Republika ng Pilipinas

"Poverty is the handiwork of neocolonialism, not of corruption. But this is not a brief for the government, which is both corrupt and neocolonial and picks the nation’s pockets as it administers the WB-IMF debt conditions."

Nang ipagkaloob sa atin ng US ang huwad na kalayaan noong 1946 ay nanatili pa rin ang mga nasa-pwestong mga rehimen na nagmumula sa uring panginoong maylupa sa pagpapasa-ilalim sa mga dikta ng US at mga empresang multinasyunal at mga ahensyang tulad ng IMF WB at WTO.  Bilang kapalit sa kanilang pagsunud-sunuran ay napatingkad nila ang kanilang kapangyarihan sa pamamagitan ng paglikha ng mga batas na pabor sa kanilang pangangamkam.

At ang korupsyon sa bansa ay lalong lumala sa pamamagitan ng lagayan, padrino, tong, nepotismo at paboritismo.

- Sa taong 1945-72 isinakatuparan ang Laurel-Langley Agreement na nagpatuloy ng malayang pangangalakal sa pagitan ng US at Pilipinas at nagpantay ng karapatan ng mga mamamayang US at Pilipinas sa ekonomiya, na malinaw na hindi akma sa ating antas ng kaunlaran.

- Pinairal ni Macapagal ang decontrol at devaluation noong 1962 at ito ang simula ng pagpapaunlak ng ating pamahalaan sa mga tuluy-tuloy na dikta ng WB-IMF.

- Sa halalan noong 1969, natalo si Macapagal kay Marcos, na siyang nagpatuloy ng mga polisiyang nagtaguyod ng mga interes ng US at naghaharing-uri.

Sa pamamagitan ng Proklamasyong 1081 noong 1972 ay naiabante ni Marcos (sampu ng kanyang mga kroni) ang sariling interes at pati na rin ng US na siyang pangunahing pinanggagalingan ng suporta, pribilehiyo at proteksyon.

- Nang mapatalsik si Marcos at maging pangulo si Cory Aquino noong Pebrero 1986, may nakamit tayong antas ng demokratisasyon, desentralisasyon at liberalisasyong pang-ekonomiya. At may mga lumitaw na mga bagong aktor sa sining ng pulitika, bagamat mabibilang na 160 pamilya lamang ang nagpapatakbo sa ating pambansa at lokal at pamahalaan.

Bago pa man matapos ang pagka-presidente ni Cory ay malinaw na hindi napuksa ng People Power ang korupsyon. Siya mismo ay nabahiran ng kanyang "Kamag-anak Inc.".

- Si Ramos naman ay nakinabang sa PEA-Amari land scam.

- Si Estrada at ang kanyang angkan ay nangamkam ng mga tong mula sa jueteng, atbp.

- Si GMA ay kailangang managutan sa NBN-ZTE deal, OFW fund scam (kinurakot niya ang OWWA funds para pondohan ang kanyang electoral campaign), EVAT, atbp.

- Ang kasalukuyang administrasyong Aquino ay binubuo pa rin ng mga kinatawan ng malalaking negosyo at panginoong maylupa.

1. Ang rehimeng Aquino ay bigo sa pagpapanagot kay Arroyo at mga alipores nito sa usapin ng pandarambong (maliban sa lansakang paglabag sa karapatang pantao, malawakang pandaraya sa eleksyon at iba pang mga krimen).

2. Si Aquino ay nagpapatuloy ng mga neo-liberal at maka-dayuhang patakaran sa ekonomiya na matagal nang nabigong iahon ang bansa mula sa kumunoy ng kahirapan. Nakaasa ito sa dayuhang pamumuhunan, dayuhang pautang at OFW remittances para patakbuhin ang ekonomiya. Wala itong plano para sa tunay na reporma sa lupa at pambansang industriyalisasyon.

3. Matingkad ang bangayan ng mga paksyon ng naghaharing-uri sa loob ng administrasyon at militar bunga ng agawan sa "spoils of office" at dahil dito'y nailantad ang militar bilang "temple of corruption".

( http://www.lfs.ph/2010/10/06/100-araw-nasaan-ang-pagbabago/)

Sa kabilang banda, ang linya ni P-Noy na "Walang mahirap kung walang  korupt" ay taliwas sa estratehiya ng pagbabago dahil hindi nito isinasalang-alang na may mga korupt dahil maraming naghihirap. (http://antipinoy.com/the-myth-of-walang-mahirap-kung-walang-corrupt/)

III. Kahulugan ng korupsyon

Corruption is a term with many meanings, but generally it entails misusing one’s office for a private gain or unofficial end. It involves both a monetary and non-monetary benefit.

( http://www.guyanajournal.com/Corrupt.html)

There are 8 types of corruption frequently practiced in the Philippines namely: tax evasion, ghost projects and payrolls, evasion of public bidding in awarding of contracts, passing of contracts, nepotism and favoritism, extortion, protection money and bribery.

Tax Evasion

This is very rampant, particularly in the private sector due to the refusal of those engaged in private businesses to honestly declare their annual income and to pay the corresponding taxes to the government.

Ghost Projects and Payrolls

This is done by high officials of the government whereby non-existing projects are financed by the government while non-existing personnel or pensioners are being paid salaries and allowances. This practice is rampant in government agencies involved in formulation and implementation of programs and projects particularly in infrastructure and in the granting of salaries, allowances and pension benefits.

Evasion of Public Bidding in the Awarding of Contracts

Government offices, particularly bids and awards committees forego the awarding of contracts through public bidding, or award these contracts to favored business enterprises or contractors. Sometimes, members of bids and awards committees are very subjective of awarding the contract to those who can provide them with personal benefits.

To legally evade public bidding, purchasing government agencies would embark on a “piece-meal purchasing strategy” whereby small amount of supplies and materials will be bought in a continuous process. In which case, internal agreements between the buyer and the supplier is done whereby a certain percentage of the price value will be given to the buyer which sometimes result to overpricing and the purchase of sub-standard supplies and materials.

The practice of passing contracts from one contractor to another

In the construction of infrastructure projects, contractors have that practice of passing the work from one contractor to another and in the process certain percentage of the project value is retained by each contractor and sub-contractors resulting to the use of substandard materials or even unfinished projects.

Nepotism and Favoritism

Government officials particularly those occupying high positions tend to cause the appointment or employment of relatives and close friends to government positions even if they are not qualified or eligible to discharge the functions of that office. This is one of the root causes of inefficiency and the overflowing of government employees in the bureaucracy.

Extortion

This is done by government officials against their clients by demanding money, valuable items, or services from ordinary citizens who transact business with them or with their office. This is rampant in agencies issuing clearances and other documents, those involved in the recruitment of personnel, or those performing services that directly favor ordinary citizens.

“Tong” or Protection Money

This is a form of bribery which is done by citizens performing illegal activities and operations. They deliver huge amount of money to government officials particularly to those in-charge of enforcing the law in exchange for unhampered illegal operation. The law enforcement officer who receives the money will be duty-bound to protect the citizen concerned together with his illegal activities from other law enforcement authorities. This is practiced mostly by gambling lords and those engaged in business without the necessary permits.

The “Lagay” system or Bribery

The “lagay” system or the act of citizens to bribe government officials occupying sensitive positions in government is perpetuated due to bureaucratic red tape. Too much paper requirements, long and arduous processing of documents, ineffective and inefficient personnel management and the absence of professionalism in the public service force ordinary citizens to employ extraordinary and illegal methods for the immediate processing and issuance of required personal documents. The most frequently employed method is offering a considerable amount of money to a government official who can facilitate the issuance of the desired documents in agencies issuing licenses, permits, clearances, and those agencies deputized to make decisions on particular issues.

Another method in this category is the employment of “fixers” whereby people will pay certain individuals who may or may not be government employees to process or obtain personal requirements for them.

(hinango mula sahttp://www.pctc.gov.ph/papers/graft.htm)

IV. Epekto ng korupsyon

Dahil sa korupsyon, naibubulsa ng mga nasa kapangyarihan ang pera na dapat nakalaan para sa mga makabuluhang programa para sa edukasyon, kalusugan, at hanap-buhay ng mga mamamayang Pilipino.

Malinaw ang bunga ng pagiging karaniwan ng korupsyon sa gobyerno. Nawawala na ang respeto sa batas, kahit na sa Saligang Batas. Nawawala na ang diwa ng pagsisilbi sa ating mga kababayan. Nawawalan ng  pagkakataong umunlad ang ating bayan. (http://isaganircruz.blogspot.com/2009/02/former-senior-government-officials.html)

At dahil sa naisasalin ito sa bawat pumapalit na henerasyon, at naitatago sa isang antas ng lalim, nagbubunga ito ng kaisipan sa bawat mamamayan na tanggapin na normal ang ganitong  kalakaran. Umaangal na lamang tayo kapag naging sugapa na ang nasa pwesto.

V. Mga layunin ng kampanya

1)   Ipaalam at ipa-unawa sa mga Pinoy sa Austria ang ugat at pagkalaganap ng suliranin ng korupsyon

2)   Mangalap ng moral at pinasyal na suporta para sa whistleblowers at iba pang mga bumabaka sa korupsyon

3)   Makiisa sa Dapat Tapat Movement ng CenPEG at TI-Philippines iba pang mga organisadong inisyatibo at mag-ambag sa pagsasakatuparan ng mga batas laban sa korupsyon

4) Hikayatin ang pinakamalawak na paglahok ng mga Pinoy (bilang indibidwal o samahan sa pamamagitan ng kanilang mga lider) sa ating kampanya laban sa korupsyon

VI.  Mga Mensahe

- Ang korupsyon sa ating bansa ay malalim na naka-ugat sa ating kasaysayan.

- Hindi nating pwedeng iasa lamang sa ating pamahalaang ang pagpuksa ng korupsyon; ang ating pag-uusig sa sarili, pagmamahal sa bayan at nagkakaisang pagkilos ay malaking hakbang sa paglutas o pagbawas ang mga suliranin kaugnay ng korupsyon.

- "Because those people refuse to keep in mind the true knowledge about God, he has given them over to corrupted minds, so that they do the things that they should not do.29 They are filled with all kinds of wickedness, evil, greed, and vice; they are full of jealousy, murder, fighting, deceit, and malice." (Romans 1:28-29 GNT)

- "As long as Filipinos are not taught that God wants our obedience, there is no hope for change and progress for our nation. Our good behavior is a result of our individual faith and obedience to God . . . When one responds to God’s invitation and accepts His son Jesus Christ as his personal Lord and Savior, he is immediately welcomed into the family of God, and the change in that person’s personal and spiritual life begins. This is spiritual rebirth. "

"This is the only way that our nation will gain a just and righteous society. The reformation starts individually and then to the general society. The law and the penal system will not stop human corruption which is the nature of the unsaved man. " (http://www.philstar.com/Article.aspx?articleid=428245)

VII. Panawagan ng kampanya

- Suportahan natin ang mga magigiting na whistleblowers at sama-sama tayong kumilos laban sa korupsyon!

- Ipaglaban ang pagparusa sa mga perpetuators ng graft/corruption (ayon sa ating Saligang Batas, plunder is a grave non-bailable crime)!

- Suportahan natin ang pagtaguyod ng People's Governance para malabanan ang korupsyon!

VIII. Mga Pagkilos

- Forum, Discussions with resource persons from CenPEG and TI Austria

- Prayer Rally

- Petition signing, Etc.

IX. Campaign Materials and References (partial list)

- Dapat Tapat Movement Info

(http://www.cenpeg.org/VIP/dapat_tapat.htm)

- Dissecting Corruption: Philippine Perspectives

- CenPEG The Corruption of Power (http://www.pinoypress.net/2007/11/06/cenpeg-the-corruption-of-power/)

- The Myth of "Walang Mahirap Kung Walang Corrupt"(http://antipinoy.com/the-myth-of-walang-mahirap-kung-walang-corrupt/)

- Measures Employed to Control Graft  Corruption//Impediments to the Anti-Corruption Efforts (http://www.pctc.gov.ph/papers/graft.htm)

===========================================

Appendix

MEASURES EMPLOYED TO CONTROL GRAFT AND CORRUPTION

The government employs legal measures and anti-corruption bodies to combat the problem of graft and corruption.

LEGAL MEASURES

The 1987 Philippine Constitution Article XI of the 1987 Philippine Constitution, titled “Accountability of Public Officers”, states in Section 1 that “public office is a public trust. Public officers and employees must at all times be accountable to the people, serve them with utmost responsibility, integrity, loyalty and efficiency, act with patriotism and justice, and lead modest lives.” Section II of the same article states that the President, Vice-President, members of the Constitutional Commissions and the Ombudsman may be removed from office on impeachment for bribery and graft and corruption.

Republic Act No. 3019 also known as the Anti-Graft and Corrupt Practices Act of 1960 This law enumerates all corrupt practices of any public officer, declares them unlawful and provides the corresponding penalties of imprisonment (between 6-15 years) perpetual disqualification from public office, and confiscation or forfeiture of unexplained wealth in favor of the government.

Executive Order No. 292 or the Administrative Code of 1987 This order reiterates the provisions embodies in Section 1, Article XI of the 1987 Constitution. It also gives the President the power to institute proceedings to recover properties unlawfully acquired by public officials and employees.

Republic Act No. 6713 also known as the Code of Conduct and Ethical Standards for Public Officials and Employees of 1989 This act promotes a high standard of ethics and requires all government personnel to make an accurate statement of assets and liabilities, disclose net worth and financial connections. It also requires new public officials to divest ownership in any private enterprise within 30 days from assumption of office to avoid conflict of interest.

Republic Act No. 6770 also known as the Ombudsman Act of 1989 This provides the functional and structural organization of the Office of the Ombudsman which will be discussed later on.

Republic Act No. 7055 also known as An Act Strengthening Civilian Supremacy over the Military This law creates two avenues for trying erring members of the Armed Forces of the Philippines and other members subject to military laws. Crimes penalized by the Revised Penal Code and other special penal laws and local government ordinances shall be tried in civil courts. Military courts shall take cognizance of service-oriented crimes only.

Republic Act No. 7080 also known as the Act Defining and Penalizing the Crime of Plunder This act penalizes any public officer who by himself or in connivance with members of his family, relatives by affinity or consanguinity, business associates, accumulates or acquires ill-gotten wealth, through a combination of series of event criminal acts, an aggregate amount to total value of at least fifty million pesos (P50,000,000).

Republic Act No. 8249 also known as the Act Further Defining the Jurisdiction of the Sandiganbayan This classifies the Sandiganbayan as a special court and places it at par with the Court of Appeals.

Presidential Decree No. 46 declares it unlawful for government personnel to receive gifts and for private persons to give gifts on any occasion including Christmas, regardless of whether the gift is for past or future favors. It also prohibits entertaining public officials and their relatives.

Presidential Decree No. 677 requires the Statement of Assets and Liabilities to be submitted every year.

Presidential Decree No. 749 grants immunity from prosecution to givers of bribes and other gifts and to their accomplices in bribery charges if they testify against the public officials or private persons guilty of those offenses.

CONSTITUTIONAL ANTI-CORRUPTION BODIES The 1987 Philippine Constitution has created constitutional bodies to deal on graft and corruption and to effectively implement the provisions of public accountability. These bodies are granted fiscal authority to ensure their independence and their actions are appealable only to the Supreme Court. These constitutional bodies are: a) The Office of the Ombudsman (OMB) The Office of the Ombudsman investigates and acts on complaints filed against public officials and employees, and serves as the “people’s watchdog” of the government. The Ombudsman and his deputies (Overall Deputy Ombudsman, Deputy Ombudsman for the Military, One Deputy Ombudsman each for Luzon, Visayas and Mindanao) are the “protectors of the people”. This office: i) oversees the general and specific performance of official functions so that laws are properly administered; ii) ensures the steady and efficient delivery of public services; iii) initiates the refinement of public procedures and practices; and iv) imposes administrative sanctions on erring government officials and employees, and prosecute them for penal violations. b) The Civil Service Commission (CSC) The CSC is the central personnel agency of the government which is mandated to establish a career service and promote moral, efficiency, integrity, responsiveness, progressiveness, and courtesy in the civil service. It shall also strengthen the merit and rewards system, human resource development, and public accountability. It has jurisdiction over administrative cases including graft and corruption brought before it on appeal. c) The Commission on Audit (COA) The COA is the watchdog of the financial operations of the government. It is empowered to examine, audit, and settle all accounts pertaining to the revenue and receipts of, and expenditures or uses of funds and property under the custody of government agencies and instrumentalities. It shall promulgate accounting and auditing rules and regulations for the prevention and disallowance of irregular, unnecessary, excessive, extravagant, or unconscionable expenditures, or use of government funds and properties. d) The Sandiganbayan The Sandiganbayan is the anti-graft court of the Philippines. It has jurisdiction over civil and criminal cases involving graft and corrupt practices and such other offenses committed by public officers and employees. It is in charge of maintaining morality, integrity and efficiency in the public service.

OTHER GOVERNMENT ANTI-CORRUPTION BODIES Other government agencies in the fight against corruption are the following: a) The Department of Justice (DOJ) The DOJ conducts preliminary investigations on complaints of a criminal nature against public officials that are filed with the Department, subject to the approval of the OMB if the offense investigated was committed by the public official in relation to his office. The DOJ also prosecutes in these cases if the public officials involved belong to ranks lower than salary grade 27[LOVE1] . b) The National Bureau of Investigation (NBI) and the Philippine National Police (PNP) These law enforcement agencies conduct fact-finding investigations on graft cases. They conduct entrapment operations which, if successful, results in the arrest and filing of criminal complaint against the perpetrators in the courts. It may issue subpoena and serve warrants of arrest issued by the courts. The NBI agent or policeman who conducted the investigation also acts as witness for the prosecution during journal preliminary investigation and the prosecution of the case by the Ombudsman. c) The Presidential Commission on Good Government (PCGG) This was created primarily to go after ill-gotten wealth. It is also tasked to adopt safeguards to ensure that corruption shall not be repeated and institute measures to prevent the occurrence of corruption. d) The Presidential Commission against Graft and Corruption This was created under Executive Order No. 151 by then President Ramos to investigate graft and corruption cases in the executive department. It has jurisdiction over corruption cases if the crime involves: i) Appointees with rank of or higher than Assistant Regional Director; ii) At least one million pesos; iii) An offense that may threaten grievous harm to national interest; and iv) Cases specifically assigned by the President. e) The Inter-Agency Anti-Graft Coordinating Council The council coordinates the government anti-corruption efforts. It is composed of the Commission on Audit, the Civil Service Commission, the Ombudsman, the Department of Justice, the National Bureau of Investigation and the Presidential Commission against Graft and Corruption.

( http://www.pctc.gov.ph/papers/graft.htm)

IMPEDIMENTS TO THE ANTI-CORRUPTION EFFORTS

Despite the existence of these graft and corruption counter measures, this menace remains a major problem of the Philippine government. This can be attributed to the following factors:

Specific culture of Filipinos is enhancing the proliferation of graft and corruption. The strong family ties justify giving benefits to unqualified recipients which are very evident in employment and awarding of contracts. This societal phenomenon is adversely affecting professionalism, efficiency and effectiveness in the government service as well as in the construction of public infrastructure and procurement of government supplies and materials that are sometimes substandard and overpriced.

The Filipino culture of gift giving justifies bribery and extortion thereby making it hard for law enforcement and anti-corruption agencies to arrest the problem. This social practice renders inutile the law prohibiting gift giving thereby further enhancing this corrupt practice.

Agencies deputized to fight graft and corruption are not well funded by the government. There is also lack of recognition, merits, awards and rewards given by the government for the efforts of anti-corruption bodies. Personnel of these agencies mandated to go against corrupt public officials are vulnerable to bribery because of lack of financial support, integrity and professionalism. Measures have to be introduced in the recruitment of anti-corruption personnel to ensure that they possess morality, honesty, integrity and dedication to duty.

Transparency is not religiously observed particularly in government transactions. The public is denied access to activities of government officials. The people are not informed, in detail, of the share of each executive department, the legislature and the judiciary, in the national budget and how these departments spend their financial requirements.

Effective monitoring of government programs and projects as well as expenditures are not being seriously undertaken by those tasked to monitor them. They are also vulnerable to bribery and do not actually conduct thorough inspection but merely rely on information gathered.

The statement of assets and liabilities, which is an effective mechanism to curb graft and corruption is religiously submitted yearly by all public officials. However, no agency of government is deputized to examine the veracity of the data entered in those statements. Most public officials with unexplained wealth can successfully hide the same by paying accountants to make accurate and official statements for them.

Other anti- corruption provisions may work against getting good people in government. One example is the requirement of divestment, currently, the only approach to the possible conflict of interest that will be encountered by the entry of well- qualified people in the government. The current divestment procedure may be too harsh since it could effectively mean that no top industrialist should be a Secretary of Trade and industry, and no top banker may be Central Bank Governor. That would be closing to the government a valuable human resource. Besides, the appointing power must put a person where his expertise is. Others would circumvent the law by divesting themselves with their direct link to a business enterprise by transferring their interests to trusted relatives or friends but in reality, they still remains in control of the enterprise. (http://www.pctc.gov.ph/papers/graft.htm)

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