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ACRC, “8 Out of 10 Public Officials Said the Conflict of Interest Prevention Act is effective

  • Date2023-02-16
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ACRC, “8 Out of 10 Public Officials Said the Conflict of Interest Prevention Act is effective in Securing Fairness in Performing Duties”

- The result of a survey of 1,000 citizens and 2,045 public officials on their perceptions of the conflict of interest prevention law released -

(20th Jan. 2023, ACRC)

It was found that eight out of ten public officials perceived the Act on Prevention of Conflict of Interest Related to Duties of Public Servants (hereinafter the Act) which came into force on May 19th last year is effective in securing fairness in the performance of their duties.

Anti-Corruption and Civil Rights Commission (ACRC, Chairperson Jeon Hyun-Heui) conducted a survey of 1,000 citizens and 2,045 public officials on their perceptions of the Act in December last year* and published the result.

* citizens: 5th – 11th Dec. 2022, public officials: 8th – 27th Dec. 2022

Major contents of the survey relating to the Act included: if the respondents are aware of the Act and the channels for their awareness; perceptions of the effectiveness of the Act, appropriateness of 10 norms of conduct public officials should abide by under the Act and the effectiveness thereof; and how much they support the Act.

< Awareness of the Act and Channels for Awareness >

It was found that 84.2% of the citizens and 97.4% of the public officials who responded to the survey are aware (well aware + have heard) of the Act.

< Awareness of the Act (unit: %) >

Among the citizens who responded they are aware of the Act, 71.7% said they became knowledgeable of the Act through TV or radio while others said through the internet, online media, printed materials, such as newspaper and magazine, and people around them.

< Channels for Awareness of the Act >

(Unit: %, multiple answers possible)

Channels

Citizens

Channels

Public officials

TV, radio

71.7

Workplace training

80.0

Online media

59.9

Media reports

30.9

Printed materials including newspaper and magazine

27.0

In the course of performing duties

28.9

Acquaintances

9.6

Advertisement and promotional materials

6.6

Others

1.3

Acquaintances

1.4

-

-

Others

3.0

< Perceptions of Effectiveness of the Act >

68.4% of the Citizens responded that the Act is effective (very effective + a little effective) in securing fairness for the performance of duties of public officials.

In the case of public officials, 82.5% of the respondents said that the Act is effective in preventing conflicts of interest related to duties of public officials, with executives and staffs of public service-related organizations (89.0%) giving more positive answers than those of central administrative agencies (79.1%) or local governments (78.4%).

< Effectiveness of the Act (unit: %) >

 

As for why respondents perceived the Act as ineffective, those who answered that “unfair performances of duties by public officials take place in a customary manner” took up 44.3%, while those who answered “public officials are not in knowledge of the relevant Act” accounted for 49%.

< Appropriateness of 10 Duties of Public Officials Under the Act >

The survey found that the biggest number of public officials answered that five duties of reporting and submitting relevant s under the Act are all “appropriate” and a high proportion of public officials said the five duties “should be more strengthened”.

< Appropriateness of Duties of Report/Submission of s (unit: %) >

 

And to the question asking if five provisions of restriction and prohibition under the Act are appropriate, the greatest number of respondents chose “appropriate” for all those five provisions.

However, the proportion of respondents who said the provisions restricting employment of family members and prohibiting the private use of goods, etc. of public institutions and the use of confidential information obtained in the course of performing duties “should be more strengthened” was also high.

 

< Appropriateness of Provisions of Restriction and Prohibition (unit: %) >

 

In addition, public officials responded that ten norms of conduct for public officials, including the duties of report/submission and restricted/prohibited acts, are all effective in preventing public officials from seeking personal benefits.

< Proportion of Respondents Supporting the Act >

87.8% of citizens and 91.5% of public officials responded that they are “in support of the Act (very supportive + generally supportive)”.

The survey found that for the prevention of conflicts of interest in public office, citizens think strict punishment of public officials unjustly seeking personal benefits is the most important (49.0%) while public officials think the attention paid and an example set by the head and high-ranking officials of public institutions are the most important (38.6%).

< Proportion of Respondents Supporting the Act (unit: %) >

 

The Director General of Anti-Corruption Bureau of the ACRC said, “As a result of the survey, it was found that although the Act is at an early stage of implementation, a great number of citizens and public officials positively assess the effectiveness of the Act, as well as being aware of the Act,” adding that “in order for the Conflict of Interest Prevention Institution to successfully take root in public office and to secure fair performance of duties by public officials, the ACRC will continue to support public institutions of various levels in an active manner and carry out educational and promotional activities.”

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