Author: Sosori Borrey

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TIPNG NIS ASSESSMENT PAVING THE WAY FOR ICAC

In anticipation of the establishment of a PNG Independent Commission Against Corruption (ICAC), Transparency International PNG (TIPNG) is now undertaking a National Integrity Systems Assessment (NISA).

As a precursor to a fully functioning PNG ICAC, the NISA will undertake a review of internal policies within public offices in order to identify recommendations, which would allow for more streamlined implementation of anti-corruption strategies across the three arms of PNG Government. As the first of two phases in TIPNG’s new Promoting Integrity and Anti-corruption Strategies (PAIS) project, the NISA will be focused on;

  • Assessing whether there has been any progress made over time with regards to the country’s integrity systems,
  • Assessing whether there has been any progress made over time with regards to the country’s integrity systems,
  • Identifying specific changes (both positive and negative) which have occurred since the full NIS report was published in 2003,
  • And identifying recommendations and advocacy priorities for improving the country’s integrity systems.

An induction workshop hosted by TIPNG at the Lamana Hotel today, was the first step towards solidifying a partnership with government and statutory agencies. The event was attended by more than 10 representatives from different government agencies including European Union Ambassador Jernej Videtic, Department of Justice and Attorney General Secretary Dr Eric Kwa and TIPNG founding director, Richard Kassman.

Mr Kassman, during the event today highlighted the importance of strong collaboration between all stakeholders as critical towards achieving more effective and sustainable outcomes.

“TIPNG remains very optimistic about the possibility of a fully empowered PNG ICAC in the near future. It has been a recommendation which we, as an organization, have been advocating for the better part of the last 23 years,” said Mr Kassman.

“However, we are also fully aware that an effective ICAC cannot function in isolation. Raising the integrity of governance in PNG has to be a collaborative effort. And our current joint efforts with other government agencies through the NISA and the PAIS Project as a whole, are targeted at mitigating this risk.”

“The overall objective of the PAIS Project is to strengthen public trust in state agencies. The project will achieve this by ensuring that there are formal pathways for addressing corruption both internally, within themselves, as well as externally, through the ICAC, once it is brought fully online,” He said.

With funding from the European Union, the entire project has been developed to include heavy consultation with agencies in areas of government including the; Legislature, Executive, Judiciary, Public Prosecutor, Law Enforcement Agencies, Electoral Management Agency, Ombudsman, Supreme Audit Agency, Anti-Corruption Agency, Political Parties, Media, Civil Society and businesses.

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Our First PAIS Project Newsletter out now!

Transparency International PNG (TIPNG) is excited to inform everyone about its new project: Promoting Anti-Corruption & Integrity Strategies (PAIS). We are also grateful for the support of the European Union.

About the Project: As the name suggests, the PAIS Project will work with state agencies to enhance their capacity to address corruption complaints both internally and externally. The PAIS Project believes that when frameworks and actual practice by agencies to address corruption are working well, it enhances the agency’s reputation and strengthens public trust in that agency.

Building on from the past: The last NISA for Papua New Guinea was done in 2003. In this report, it was observed that there were adequate anti-corruption laws available in Papua New Guinea (Sections 87, 88, 92 and 97 of the Criminal Code refer to fraud, undue influence, tendering and bribery). The weakness however was in the effective implementation and policing of these laws. A related weakness was that organizations entrusted to fight corruption such as the Ombudsman Commission had not been given enough ‘teeth’ to deter corrupt practices.

The PAIS Project will revamp the NIS Assessment survey tool and evaluate key public institutions and non-state actors in Papua New Guinea’s governance system with regard to their overall capacity, internal governance systems and procedures and role in the overall integrity system.

Progress:

• There will be an Integrity Seminar held in September 2020 to invite agencies and organisations to participate in PAIS.

• Following the Integrity Seminar will be an Integrity Summit which is scheduled to be held in February 2021 to present the NIS assessment findings.

You and PAIS: Why should the PAIS Project matter to you? Through the PAIS Project, agencies in Papua New Guinea will have effective strategies in place to address corruption and other issues of abuse of power. In turn, citizens will be more empowered to access these systems to report corruption.

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