Sat. Jul 31st, 2021

MANILA – Malacañang on Wednesday encouraged the public to report the anomalous activities of erring officials and employees in the government.

Presidential Spokesperson Salvador Panelo made the call after a global poll found that bribery and corruption are on the rise in the Philippines in the last two years.

“We’ve been appealing to all the people, any act of corruption (or) any illegality (of public servants), you tell the government so we can immediately address them,” Panelo said in a media interview.’

Around 42 percent of companies in the Philippines have complained about being compelled to pay grease money, making them suffer losses between USD5 million and USD50 million since 2018, a study conducted by PricewaterhouseCoopers (PwC) revealed.

PwC interviewed a total of 101 business firms, which involved a balanced mix of local and multinational firms.

The pollster noted that 43 percent of business companies said they experienced fraud at least twice, while a tenth encountered such incidents over six to 12 times.

Panelo said businessmen are to blame because they fail to lodge a formal complaint.

“Any administration will never succeed unless you in the ground are cooperating with these corrupt people,” he said.

Panelo said President Rodrigo Duterte would have punished the corrupt government workers had he known about their supposed irregularities.

He then urged the victims of corruption to speak out.

“Palaging sinasabi ni Presidente, ‘Gumawa kayo ng ingay, malalaman ko ‘yun, makakarating sa akin (Make a noise. I will know about it. It will reach me).’ But if you keep it to yourselves, how can we eliminate corruption?” Panelo said. “Kung tumatahimik yung mismong involved, paano malalaman iyan (If those involved are mum, how can we know)? It has to start with something so you can pursue.”

Duterte has repeatedly vowed to make the government corrupt-free.

He has also fired public officials and employees, including his allies, due to their supposed involvement in corruption.

In a weekly Palace economic briefing on Wednesday, Trade Secretary Ramon Lopez said Duterte would never tolerate any corrupt practices in government.

“Ang ating Pangulo, hindi nagda-dalawang isip sa pagpapatanggal ng mga nakikitaan niyang corrupt personnel in government. Sabi nga niya, kahit kaibigan o supporter, wala ho siyang sinasanto (The President never thinks twice when it comes to firing corrupt personnel in government. He said no one will be spared, be it his friend or supporter),” Lopez said. (ia/PNA)

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