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Manele suggests more corruption definitions in NACS

THE Leader of the Official Opposition Hon Jeremiah Manele has suggested that the Government provide some definitions of the word corruption in the National Anticorruption Strategy (NACS) to have people understand the seriousness of the issue and costs.

Hon Manele made the statement in Parliament when contributing on the motion of the strategy moved by the Prime Minister Hon Manasseh Sogavare this week.

The goal of the strategy and action plan is to reduce the opportunities for incidence of corruption in the country.

“Sir, in terms of the structure of the document, the background and introduction to the Strategy would have benefited from some definitions of the word corruption and the costs to society to give our people a wider understanding and appreciation of the nature of this serious problem.

“The Strategy document should have also ended with a conclusion highlighting the enormity of the problem and the Government’s strong commitment to lead the fight against corruption through the National Action Plan,” said Manele.

He then however added that he believes this strategy has given the opportunity to deal with this problem more meaningfully.

“On this note Sir, I would like to register here that I fully support any commitments by the Government to combat this issue.

“Let us do the right thing so that this country will be rewarded with the right things,” Hon Manele strongly stated.

The causes of corruption, according to the Leader of the Official Opposition are divided into four main categories.

They are; weak institutions; weak law enforcement; captured elites; and low trust in state institutions.

“Sir the institutions themselves may not be the problem.

“The problem is the lack of resources for individuals in those institutions including law enforcement agencies to do their work.

“But even if the resources are there, the individual may still not perform because of low salaries and poor conditions of service,” Manele added.

The MP for Hograno-Kia-Havulei then then made reference to the Strategy that the factors enabling corruption or providing opportunities for corruptions in Solomon Islands outlined on pages 10 Page 14 of the Strategy document, which were highlighted in provincial consultations.

These include the procurement of public goods and services; Natural Resource Extractive Industries; Pressure from Political Leaders and Senior Officials and Businesses; Low Salaries and Poor Conditions of Service; Public Servants soliciting Commission; Lack of Proper Recording and Accounting; Cultural Obligations; and Excessive Claims and Misuse of Public Properties.

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