The call was reiterated by President-elect Rodrigo Duterte during the “Sulong Pilipinas” consultative meeting held by businessmen in Davao City.
Today, corruption takes many forms. In Government, it is found in all levels, practically like a “fits all sizes” formula. When President Benigno Aquino 3rd took his oath in 2010, he vowed to curb corruption. To some extent he made good his promise, focusing on what were considered graft-ridden agencies at that time – DPWH, Bureau of Customs and BIR, including the Supreme Court.
For those who have followed the campaign against corruption during P’Noy’s term, one can easily spot his Administration’s focus – those who sit high in Government – his predecessor President, a Chief Justice, three sitting Senators, some LGU executives. There were those who appreciated such initiative – but questions were raised and remain unanswered to date on why some of those in his Administration to whom were imputed corrupt acts were not investigated much less relieved of their posts
What makes President-elect Duterte’s campaign against corruption much anticipated is the projection that frontliners, i.e. those with whom ordinary people deal to secure Government services and documentation, are under strict instruction to render service promptly and competently at no extra cost. The daily transactions with Government, commonplace and routine they may seem, are where we usually find the many woes and travails of the Filipino.
Corruption to many means having to deal with “fixers” who offer expeditious action and getting ahead of the others, thus bypassing long queues. It could also mean turning a blind eye to non-compliance with and violation of established rules and regulations. Being re-miss in the performance of one’s duties, unbridled spending of Government funds for lavish meetings and training, flashy cars are no-nos for the incoming Administration.
President-elect Duterte stated in no uncertain terms there will be zero tolerance to corruption. And make no mistake, the call covers not only those who serve in Government but also their clientele. Good governance after all is not only for those in public office but hold equally responsible those who demand to be served by Government.
Must be a welcome policy directive for maritime stakeholders!