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ACRC Conducted Corruption Risk Assessment of Bylaws of 506 Public Institutions

  • Date2023-02-16
  • Hit935

ACRC Conducted Corruption Risk Assessment of Bylaws of 506 Public Institutions, Removing 4,722 Corruption-Causing Factors Inherent Therein

Customarily practiced acts of corruption in public institutions, including overseas business trip, abuse of authority over personnel affairs and unfair contract, etc., blocked at the source

(11th Jan. 2023, ACRC)

The results of Corruption Risk Assessment (CRA) on bylaws of public institutions in the country conducted during a span of last three years have found that corruption-causing factors such as overseas business trips, abuse of authority over personnel affairs and unfair contract, etc. have been removed, raising an awareness of integrity of executives and staff members of public institutions.

Anti-Corruption and Civil Rights Commission (ACRC, Chairperson Jeon Hyun-Heui) carried out CRA on bylaws of 506 public institutions for the last three years from 2020 to 2022 and published the results.

ACRC established a legal foundation for the CRA* of public institutions closely related to the public life by amending the Act on the Prevention of Corruption and Establishment and Operation of the Anti-Corruption and Civil Rights Commission in 2009 and started to conduct the CRA on public corporations first, and in order of local firms, industrial complex, quasi-government organizations, and other types of public institutions.

* Corruption Risk Assessment: a primary corruption prevention system aimed at preemptively eliminating corruption risks in the course of implementation of laws and regulations by analyzing, identifying, removing, and improving corruption-causing factors inherent in those laws and regulations from the very stage of drafting thereof

As a result of the CRA, ACRC identified 4,722 factors with potential for corruption inherent in 48,174 bylaws of 506 public institutions in the country and offered them recommendations for improvement.

ACRC has also established measures to prevent fake and overseas business trip by executives and staff members of public institutions. Specifically, the measures include mandatory submission, etc. of evidence s to prove trips are for business purposes and reinforcement of preliminary examinations of overseas business trips.

In addition, ACRC has also blocked the possibility for unqualified officials to get promoted by extending the period of limitations on promotion in the case of an official who committed acts of serious irregularities and has clarified the standard for special employment which had been vague previously. Furthermore, the Commission has removed factors that may cause hiring irregularities by making it mandatory for public institutions to go through a personnel committee for any special employment.

To secure fairness in contract, ACRC prohibited entering into a private contract for two years with retired public officials or companies by which retirees are employed as executives.

ACRC also prepared measures to prevent research-related irregularities, including specifying the scope of private interests of investigation commissioners of research ethics violations, disclosing the list of investigation commissioners and the result of investigation, reinforcing sanctions on those committing research-related irregularities, prohibiting indiscreet provision and illegal use of gift certificates, controlling the use of corporate cards, and strengthening conflict-of-interest preventive rules related to the establishment and management of major review board.

It was found as a result of the CRA that statistically, an average of 9.3 corruption-causing factors per public institution have been removed.

By type of public institution, public institutions whose type is categorized as others have received the greatest number of recommendations for improvement (2,250), followed by local firms/industrial complex (1,756), quasi-government organizations (501) and public corporations (215), indicating that institutions given relatively higher levels of leeway in the management and lower control from the government has received more recommendations for improvement from the ACRC.

By content of recommendations, those related to eradication of personnel or hiring irregularities took up the biggest proportion, amounting to 2,233 cases (47.3%), followed by those concerning improvement in unfair work practices (1,309 cases, 27.7%) and transparency enhancement in the course of institutional management (1,181 cases, 25.0%).

By specific area of duties, among 11 areas, the highest number of recommendations have been offered to the four areas, such as personnel, contract, committee, and service, accounting for 79.4% (3,750 cases), implying many corruption-causing factors existed in the area of duties related to personnel and contract affairs, including the abuse of authority over HR management and unfair contract by the head of a public institution.

After completing the CRA, ACRC surveyed members of the 506 public institutions (278 people responded) and found that the level of integrity awareness has been also improved.

Respondents who said “as a result of the CRA, the level of integrity of executives and employees was raised” stood at 66.9%, more than twice as many as those with negative perceptions (33.1%). Also, respondents who thought the CRA was helpful in preventing corruption in their institutions accounted for 80.2%.

In particular, the CRA has had a diagnostic effect regarding corruption in general management of public institutions, as the level of integrity in all areas of duties, including HR, employment, contract, accounting, and conflict-of-interest, has been evenly improved.

According to the result of the 2022 corruption perception survey of public servants, it was found the level of integrity of public institutions has been enhanced both internally and externally, with more public officials having perceptions of their institutions’ integrity level as improved, scoring 60.9 points on average, one and a half times more than the number of respondents with negative perceptions (39.1 points).

Furthermore, 69.1% of the institutions which experienced the CRA felt the need for it and the number of those interested in voluntary implementation of autonomous CRA and development of assessment capabilities increased as well.

The vice chairperson of the ACRC, Ahn Sung-Wook, said, “As the CRA conducted over the span of last three years on public institutions have improved the level of integrity and perceptions of autonomous corruption risk assessment in public institutions, the ACRC will continue to support institutions in their voluntary prevention of corruption in various manners and make efforts to prevent corruption in the public sector through CRA.”

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