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GRAFT AND CORRUPTION: corruption triad - attraction, opportunity, rationalization
meaning, causes, measures to minimize

What is corruption?
How do you define corruption?
Generally speaking as “the abuse of entrusted power for private gain”. Corruption can be
classified as grand, petty and political, depending on the amounts of money lost and the sector
where it occurs.
Grand corruption consists of acts committed at a high level of government that distort policies or
the central functioning of the state, enabling leaders to benefit at the expense of the public good.
Petty corruption refers to everyday abuse of entrusted power by low- and mid-level public
officials in their interactions with ordinary citizens, who often are trying to access basic goods or
services in places like hospitals, schools, police departments and other agencies.
Political corruption is a manipulation of policies, institutions and rules of procedure in the
allocation of resources and financing by political decision makers, who abuse their position to
sustain their power, status and wealth. See animated definitions of many corruption terms in our
Anti-corruption Glossary.

Transparency is about shedding light on rules, plans, processes and actions. It is knowing why,
how, what, and how much. Transparency ensures that public officials, civil servants, managers,
board members and businesspeople act visibly and understandably, and report on their activities.
And it means that the general public can hold them to account. It is the surest way of guarding
against corruption, and helps increase trust in the people and institutions on which our futures
depend. See how transparency can defeat corruption in a range of areas.

Corruption impacts societies in a multitude of ways. In the worst cases, it costs lives. Short of
this, it costs people their freedom, health or money. The cost of corruption can be divided into
four main categories: political, economic, social and environmental.
On the political front, corruption is a major obstacle to democracy and the rule of law. In a
democratic system, offices and institutions lose their legitimacy when they’re misused for private
advantage. This is harmful in established democracies, but even more so in newly emerging
ones. It is extremely challenging to develop accountable political leadership in a corrupt climate.
Economically, corruption depletes national wealth. Corrupt politicians invest scarce public
resources in projects that will line their pockets rather than benefit communities, and prioritise
high-profile projects such as dams, power plants, pipelines and refineries over less spectacular
but more urgent infrastructure projects such as schools, hospitals and roads. Corruption also
hinders the development of fair market structures and distorts competition, which in turn deters
Corruption corrodes the social fabric of society. It undermines people's trust in the political
system, in its institutions and its leadership. A distrustful or apathetic public can then become yet
another hurdle to challenging corruption.


Or it could be a perceived financial need. information. proceed step-by-step and stay and assets that are truly necessary for an employee to complete his or her job. business and civil society work together to develop standards and procedures they all support. It might be a real financial or other type of need. is a pressure or a “need” felt by the person who commits corruption. famed criminologist Donald R.V. Rather. companies across the globe continue to pay bribes in return for unrestricted destruction. motivation. such as high medical bills or debts. and rationalization. project-by-project process. We also know that corruption can’t be rooted out in one big sweep. fighting it is a step-by-step. &copy. There may be high pressure for good results at work or a need to cover up someone’s poor performance. or nonenforcement of. 2000-2014. another aspect of the corruption triangle. From mining. it’s probably easier to 2 . Access must be limited to only those systems. Opportunity is the element over which business owners have the most | One of the older and more basic concepts in corruption deterrence and detection is the “corruption triangle. employees may rationalize this behavior by determining that committing corruption is OK for a variety of reasons.html The Corruption Triangle and What You Can Do About It Tracy Coenen AllBusiness. For those who are generally dishonest. We have learned from experience that corruption can only be kept in check if representatives from government. The three key elements in the corruption triangle are opportunity. Unfortunately. Employees are given access to records and valuables in the ordinary course of their jobs. and entire ecological systems are ravaged. What do you do to fight Corruption? Our three guiding principles are: build partnerships. Addictions such as gambling and drugs may also motivate someone to commit corruption. environmental regulations and legislation means that precious natural resources are carelessly exploited. to carbon offsets. Over the years. Transparency International e.Environmental degradation is another consequence of corrupt systems. Lastly. Limiting opportunities for corruption is one way a company can reduce it. Cressey came up with this hypothesis to explain why people commit corruption. Our non-confrontational approach is necessary to get all relevant parties around the negotiating table. Motivators can also be nonfinancial. read:https://www. that access allows people to commit corruption. to logging.” While researching his doctoral thesis in the 1950s. The lack of. such as a person who has a desire for material goods but not the means to get them. This has led to more access for them.allbusiness. managers have become responsible for a wider range of employees and functions. Motivation. as well as more control over functional areas of companies. The opportunity to commit corruption is possible when employees have access to assets and information that allows them to both commit and conceal corruption.

SPECIFIC TYPES OF CORRUPTION IN THE PHILIPPINES There are 8 types of corruption frequently practiced in the Philippines namely: tax evasion. today. In general. In 1989. while the anti-corruption landscape in the Philippines has improved. Common rationalizations include making up for being underpaid or replacing a bonus that was deserved but not About 30 % of the national budget is reportedly lost to graft and corruption every year. Ghost Projects and Payrolls 3 .rationalize a corruption. Some embezzlers tell themselves that the company doesn’t need the money or won’t miss the assets. passing of contracts. Ramos considered graft and corruption as the third major hindrance towards attaining his development strategy for the country. evasion of public bidding in awarding of contracts. former President Fidel V. LTD. Business owners and executives must take control of corruption by working on the portion of the corruption triangle over which they have the most control: the opportunity to commit corruption.htm PCTC PAPER ON GRAFT AND CORRUPTION A.47 billion). Aquino likewise despaired that corruption has returned. A thief may convince himself that he is just “borrowing” money from the company and will pay it back one day. It may be difficult for management to do anything about an employee’s needs or rationalizations. graft and corruption in the Philippines was considered as the "biggest problem of all" by Jaime Cardinal Sin. the 1999 budget of P 590 billion pesos (approximately US$15. in 1998. The Philippines then placed 6th out of the 11 Asian countries surveyed under the PERC corruption perception index (CPI). protection money and bribery.5 billion) will stand to lose about P 170 billion pesos (approximately US $ 4. particularly in the private sector due to the refusal of those engaged in private businesses to honestly declare their annual income and to pay the corresponding taxes to the government. ghost projects and payrolls. the country got good marks from Transparency International and the Political and Economic Risk Consultancy (PERC). In 1992. nepotism and favoritism. Others believe that the company “deserves” to have money stolen because of bad acts against employees. INTRODUCTION In 1988. but by limiting opportunities for corruption. Thus. extortion. public perception was that "corrupt government officials are greater threat to the country" than the communist guerrillas. a measure of lost development opportunities in terms of investment. national and international opinion depict the Philippine as still corrupt and being unable to effectively fight this problem. graft and corruption in the Philippines remains. For those with higher moral standards. B.pctc. Indeed. the Archbishop of Manila.5 still placed the Philippines as hig hly prone to corruption. They have to convince themselves that corruption is OK with “excuses” for their behavior. the company can reduce it to some extent. its low score of 6. Then President Corazon C. http://www. Tax Evasion This is very rampant. The administration of President Joseph Ejercito Estrada has vowed to reduce graft and corruption by 80 % before the end of his term. A decade later. it’s probably not so easy.

permits. This is rampant in agencies issuing clearances and other documents. To legally evade public bidding. those involved in the recruitment of personnel. This is practiced mostly by gambling lords and those engaged in business without the necessary permits. In which case. contractors have that practice of passing the work from one contractor to another and in the process certain percentage of the project value is retained by each contractor and sub-contractors resulting to the use of substandard materials or even unfinished projects. Extortion This is done by government officials against their clients by demanding money. valuable items. The law enforcement officer who receives the money will be duty-bound to protect the citizen concerned together with his illegal activities from other law enforcement authorities. clearances. “Tong” or Protection Money This is a form of bribery which is done by citizens performing illegal activities and operations. Too much paper requirements. or those performing services that directly favor ordinary citizens. or services from ordinary citizens who transact business with them or with their office. The “Lagay” system or Bribery The “lagay” system or the act of citizens to bribe government officials occupying sensitive positions in government is perpetuated due to bureaucratic red tape. 4 . particularly bids and awards committees forego the awarding of contracts through public bidding. The most frequently employed method is offering a considerable amount of money to a government official who can facilitate the issuance of the desired documents in agencies issuing licenses. ineffective and inefficient personnel management and the absence of professionalism in the public service force ordinary citizens to employ extraordinary and illegal methods for the immediate processing and issuance of required personal documents. This is one of the root causes of inefficiency and the overflowing of government employees in the bureaucracy. Nepotism and Favoritism Government officials particularly those occupying high positions tend to cause the appointment or employment of relatives and close friends to government positions even if they are not qualified or eligible to discharge the functions of that office. This practice is rampant in government agencies involved in formulation and implementation of programs and projects particularly in infrastructure and in the granting of salaries. or award these contracts to favored business enterprises or contractors. Sometimes.This is done by high officials of the government whereby non-existing projects are financed by the government while non-existing personnel or pensioners are being paid salaries and allowances. They deliver huge amount of money to government officials particularly to those in-charge of enforcing the law in exchange for unhampered illegal operation. C. The practice of passing contracts from one contractor to another In the construction of infrastructure projects. members of bids and awards committees are very subjective of awarding the contract to those who can provide them with personal benefits. long and arduous processing of documents. internal agreements between the buyer and the supplier is done whereby a certain percentage of the price value will be given to the buyer which sometimes result to overpricing and the purchase of sub-standard supplies and materials. purchasing government agencies would embark on a “piece-meal purchasing strategy” whereby small amount of supplies and materials will be bought in a continuous process. Evasion of Public Bidding in the Awarding of Contracts Government offices. MEASURES EMPLOYED TO CONTROL GRAFT AND CORRUPTION The government employs legal measures and anti-corruption bodies to combat the problem of graft and corruption. and those agencies deputized to make decisions on particular issues. Another method in this category is the employment of “fixers” whereby people will pay certain individuals who may or may not be government employees to process or obtain personal requirements for them. allowances and pension benefits.

i. Republic Act No. 3019 also known as the Anti-Graft and Corrupt Practices Act of 1960 This law enumerates all corrupt practices of any public officer. Republic Act No. through a combination of series of event criminal acts. act with patriotism and justice. relatives by affinity or consanguinity. and confiscation or forfeiture of unexplained wealth in favor of the government.” Section II of the same article states that the President.000. Republic Act No. d. serve them with utmost responsibility. 7080 also known as the Act Defining and Penalizing the Crime of Plunder This act penalizes any public officer who by himself or in connivance with members of his family. LEGAL MEASURES a. 46 declares it unlawful for government personnel to receive gifts and for private persons to give gifts on any occasion including Christmas. Republic Act No. 7055 also known as An Act Strengthening Civilian Supremacy over the Military This law creates two avenues for trying erring members of the Armed Forces of the Philippines and other members subject to military laws. Republic Act No. It also requires new public officials to divest ownership in any private enterprise within 30 days from assumption of office to avoid conflict of interest.1. Public officers and employees must at all times be accountable to the people. 6713 also known as the Code of Conduct and Ethical Standards for Public Officials and Employees of 1989 This act promotes a high standard of ethics and requires all government personnel to make an accurate statement of assets and liabilities. regardless of 5 . disclose net worth and financial connections. members of the Constitutional Commissions and the Ombudsman may be removed from office on impeachment for bribery and graft and corruption. f. 8249 also known as the Act Further Defining the Jurisdiction of the Sandiganbayan This classifies the Sandiganbayan as a special court and places it at par with the Court of Appeals. an aggregate amount to total value of at least fifty million pesos (P50. h. Vice-President. declares them unlawful and provides the corresponding penalties of imprisonment (between 6-15 years) perpetual disqualification from public office. e. Republic Act No. b. states in Section 1 that “public office is a public trust. titled “Accountability of Public Officers”. and lead modest lives. accumulates or acquires ill-gotten wealth. Military courts shall take cognizance of service-oriented crimes only. g. loyalty and efficiency. Crimes penalized by the Revised Penal Code and other special penal laws and local government ordinances shall be tried in civil courts.000). Article XI of the 1987 Constitution. 292 or the Administrative Code of 1987 This order reiterates the provisions embodies in Section 1. It also gives the President the power to institute proceedings to recover properties unlawfully acquired by public officials and employees. 6770 also known as the Ombudsman Act of 1989 This provides the functional and structural organization of the Office of the Ombudsman which will be discussed later on. Presidential Decree No. The 1987 Philippine Constitution Article XI of the 1987 Philippine Constitution. Executive Order No. integrity. c. business associates.

One Deputy Ombudsman each for Luzon. These bodies are granted fiscal authority to ensure their independence and their actions are appealable only to the Supreme Court. excessive. and serves as the “people’s watchdog” of the government. j. or use of government funds and properties. b) The Civil Service Commission (CSC) The CSC is the central personnel agency of the government which is mandated to establish a career service and promote moral. extravagant. The Ombudsman and his deputies (Overall Deputy Ombudsman. progressiveness. and prosecute them for penal violations. responsiveness. and public accountability. iii) initiates the refinement of public procedures and practices. The DOJ also prosecutes 6 .whether the gift is for past or future favors. It shall also strengthen the merit and rewards system. 749 grants immunity from prosecution to givers of bribes and other gifts and to their accomplices in bribery charges if they testify against the public officials or private persons guilty of those offenses. It is in charge of maintaining morality. OTHER GOVERNMENT ANTI-CORRUPTION BODIES Other government agencies in the fight against corruption are the following: a) The Department of Justice (DOJ) The DOJ conducts preliminary investigations on complaints of a criminal nature against public officials that are filed with the Department. These constitutional bodies are: a) The Office of the Ombudsman (OMB) The Office of the Ombudsman investigates and acts on complaints filed against public officials and employees. 677 requires the Statement of Assets and Liabilities to be submitted every year. audit. d) The Sandiganbayan The Sandiganbayan is the anti-graft court of the Philippines. efficiency. Presidential Decree No. Presidential Decree No. Visayas and Mindanao) are the “protectors of the people”. integrity and efficiency in the public service. and courtesy in the civil service. ii) ensures the steady and efficient delivery of public services. It shall promulgate accounting and auditing rules and regulations for the prevention and disallowance of irregular. and iv) imposes administrative sanctions on erring government officials and employees. 2. 3. human resource development. It is empowered to examine. and settle all accounts pertaining to the revenue and receipts of. unnecessary. k. CONSTITUTIONAL ANTI-CORRUPTION BODIES The 1987 Philippine Constitution has created constitutional bodies to deal on graft and corruption and to effectively implement the provisions of public accountability. subject to the approval of the OMB if the offense investigated was committed by the public official in relation to his office. c) The Commission on Audit (COA) The COA is the watchdog of the financial operations of the government. integrity. This office: i) oversees the general and specific performance of official functions so that laws are properly administered. It also prohibits entertaining public officials and their relatives. or unconscionable expenditures. and expenditures or uses of funds and property under the custody of government agencies and instrumentalities. It has jurisdiction over administrative cases including graft and corruption brought before it on appeal. It has jurisdiction over civil and criminal cases involving graft and corrupt practices and such other offenses committed by public officers and employees. Deputy Ombudsman for the Military.

results in the arrest and filing of criminal complaint against the perpetrators in the courts. of the share of each executive department. Specific culture of Filipinos is enhancing the proliferation of graft and corruption. This societal phenomenon is adversely affecting professionalism. They conduct entrapment operations which. Agencies deputized to fight graft and corruption are not well funded by the government. 4. This social practice renders inutile the law prohibiting gift giving thereby further enhancing this corrupt practice. the legislature and the judiciary. d) The Presidential Commission against Graft and Corruption This was created under Executive Order No. It is composed of the Commission on Audit. 2. the Civil Service Commission. and iv) Cases specifically assigned by the President. Transparency is not religiously observed particularly in government transactions. merits. It may issue subpoena and serve warrants of arrest issued by the courts. IMPEDIMENTS TO THE ANTI-CORRUPTION EFFORTS Despite the existence of these graft and corruption counter measures. integrity and professionalism. ii) At least one million pesos. 3. c) The Presidential Commission on Good Government (PCGG) This was created primarily to go after ill-gotten wealth. D. efficiency and effectiveness in the government service as well as in the construction of public infrastructure and procurement of government supplies and materials that are sometimes substandard and these cases if the public officials involved belong to ranks lower than salary grade 27[LOVE1] . This can be attributed to the following factors: 1. honesty. iii) An offense that may threaten grievous harm to national interest. Personnel of these agencies mandated to go against corrupt public officials are vulnerable to bribery because of lack of financial support. 151 by then President Ramos to investigate graft and corruption cases in the executive department. There is also lack of recognition. the Ombudsman. b) The National Bureau of Investigation (NBI) and the Philippine National Police (PNP) These law enforcement agencies conduct fact-finding investigations on graft cases. Measures have to be introduced in the recruitment of anti-corruption personnel to ensure that they possess morality. The Filipino culture of gift giving justifies bribery and extortion thereby making it hard for law enforcement and anti-corruption agencies to arrest the problem. the Department of Justice. in the national budget and how these departments spend their financial requirements. 7 . The strong family ties justify giving benefits to unqualified recipients which are very evident in employment and awarding of contracts. The people are not informed. integrity and dedication to duty. this menace remains a major problem of the Philippine government. It is also tasked to adopt safeguards to ensure that corruption shall not be repeated and institute measures to prevent the occurrence of corruption. awards and rewards given by the government for the efforts of anti-corruption bodies. The NBI agent or policeman who conducted the investigation also acts as witness for the prosecution during journal preliminary investigation and the prosecution of the case by the Ombudsman. the National Bureau of Investigation and the Presidential Commission against Graft and Corruption. It has jurisdiction over corruption cases if the crime involves: i) Appointees with rank of or higher than Assistant Regional Director. e) The Inter-Agency Anti-Graft Coordinating Council The council coordinates the government anti-corruption efforts. in detail. The public is denied access to activities of government officials. if successful.

and no top banker may be Central Bank Governor. the only approach to the possible conflict of interest that will be encountered by the entry of well.qualified people in the government. The statement of assets and liabilities. currently. That would be closing to the government a valuable human resource. no agency of government is deputized to examine the veracity of the data entered in those statements. They are also vulnerable to bribery and do not actually conduct thorough inspection but merely rely on information gathered. which is an effective mechanism to curb graft and corruption is religiously submitted yearly by all public officials. However. Besides. The current divestment procedure may be too harsh since it could effectively mean that no top industrialist should be a Secretary of Trade and industry. Most public officials with unexplained wealth can successfully hide the same by paying accountants to make accurate and official statements for them. Other anti. they still remains in control of the enterprise.5. Others would circumvent the law by divesting themselves with their direct link to a business enterprise by transferring their interests to trusted relatives or friends but in reality. the appointing power must put a person where his expertise is. One example is the requirement of divestment. Effective monitoring of government programs and projects as well as expenditures are not being seriously undertaken by those tasked to monitor them. 8 . 6.corruption provisions may work against getting good people in government. 7.