Customs most corrupt gov’t agency — SWS

President Benigno S. Aquino III graces the 45th anniversary celebration of the Presidential Management Staff held at the Reception Hall of the Philippine International Convention Center in Pasay City on Thursday (August 20) with the theme: “Sustaining the Tradition of Excellence in Public Service.” (MNS photo)

President Benigno S. Aquino III graces the 45th anniversary celebration of the Presidential Management Staff held at the Reception Hall of the Philippine International Convention Center in Pasay City on Thursday (August 20) with the theme: “Sustaining the Tradition of Excellence in Public Service.” (MNS photo)

MANILA (Mabuhay) — The Bureau of Customs (BOC) ranked as the most corrupt among the government agencies in a poll conducted among executives of companies according to a Social Weather Stations (SWS) survey released Thursday.

The survey involved face-to-face interview of executives of 966 companies, 325 of whom were randomly drawn large enterprises, and 641 were randomly drawn small and medium enterprises.

Under the category of sincerity in fighting corruption, the BOC placed “very bad” as it ranked from -63 net rating in 2013 to -55 in 2014/15 in the face of the issues surrounding the bureau regarding “balikbayan” boxes.

This was followed by Land Transportation Office from -32 to -26; House of Representatives from -28 to -25; Department of Public Works and Highways from -22- to -21; Philippine National Police from -24 to -16 and Department of Agriculture from -19 to -10, all categorized as “poor” by the SWS survery.

Placed in the “neutral” category were the Commission on Elections at -6, down from +7 in 2013; Bureau of Internal Revenue at -4, up from -10; Department of Transportation and Communication at -2, a wide slide from +8; Department of Budget and Management at -7, down from +9; Armed Forces of the Philippines at +4, down from +10; Department of Environment and Natural Resources at +6, up from -4; trial courts at +6, down from +9 and Department of Interior and Local Government at +9, which plunged from +20.
“Moderate” government agencies in terms of fighting corruption were as follows: Governance Commission for government-owned and -controlled corporation and their own city government at +12, which was tested for the first time; Presidential Commission on Good Government, which improved from -28 to +15; Department of Social Welfare and Development at +24, down from +52; Government Service Insurance System +27, a boost from -5 and Department of Health at +28, down from +53.

The Department of Justice ranked “good” at +34, a slight decrease from +35. Included in this category were Commission on Audit at +36, a progress from +22; Office of the Ombudsman at +36, an increase from +23; Sandiganbayan at +37, up from +15; Department of Education at +49, a slight improvement from +43; Civil Service Commission, also tested for the first time, got +41; Supreme Court at +42, a decrease from +36 and Filipino business associations at +49, down from +64.

The government agencies that achieved “very good” ratings in fighting corruption are Securities and Exchange Commission (from +55 to +63), Social Security System (from +52 to +57), Office of the President (from +77 to +54) and Department of Trade and Industry (from +58 to +51).

The SWS terminology for net sincerity ratings is: excellent, +70 and up; very good, +50 to +69; good, +30 to +49; moderate, +10 to +29; neutral, -9 to +9; poor, -29 to -10; bad, -49 to -30 and very bad -69 to -50.

Meanwhile, the survey revealed that a “new low 11% said that government ‘often/almost always’ punishes corrupt government officials.” It also said that 90% agreed that “corruption will be reduced by the passage of a strong law on the right of the people to information from the government.”

The SWS survey stated that a “new high 79% said transaction procedures of city/municipal government offices are somewhat/definitely transparent, being solicited for a bribe fell from 50% (2012) to 44% (2013 and 2014/15) and only 13% of those solicited for a bribe reported it.”

The same SWS survey added that “72% have good/excellent expectations (record 76% in 2013) for business in the next 2 years.”

The 2014/15 survey was conducted from November 14, 2014 to May 12, 2015. The sample enterprises were drawn from seven study areas: Metro Manila, Metro Angeles, Cavite-Laguna-Batangas, Metro Iloilo, Metro Cebu, Metro Davao, and Cagayan de Oro-Iligan. (MNS)

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