|During a National Assembly session yesterday, Nguyen Van Hien, chairman of NA Justice Committee, offers an evaluation of the Government's report on anti-corruption. — VNA/VNS Photo Phuong Hoa
HA NOI (VNS) — Corruption in the public sector continues to be a serious and deeply pervasive issue, but according to Nguyen Van Hien, chairman of NA Justice Committee, the discovery, investigation and litigation of corruption cases has decreased this year.
During a National Assembly session yesterday, Hien offered an evaluation of the Government's report on anti-corruption.
The Government's report, presented by Government Inspector General Huynh Phong Tranh, said that bribery is still very common in governmental bodies.
Investigative agencies indicted 317 defendants for corruption-related crimes this year, a decrease of 61 cases and 242 defendants since last year. People's procuracies at all levels brought 310 cases to court, a decrease of 19 cases compared to last year.
More than VND505 billion ($22.7 million) was reclaimed, which is just 56 per cent of the VND950 billion ($42.75 million) total in corruption-related losses claimed by the government. The report explained that the 56 per cent reclamation rate was kept low by an arduous investigation process that requires substantial amounts of time and effort to collect evidence and verify.
Inspection agencies found evidence to support 100 newly opened cases this year, which could amount to a total of VND40.7 billion (US$1.83 million) in corruption money.
The justice committee's evaluation report also said that currently there are no laws about monitoring state employees and officials' incomes, and only five people this year were found guilty of improper asset and property declaration.
The committee asked for stricter measures to discover and address corruption.
"Moral degradation among a part of the public staff and officials is still happening, and there has not been an effective way to strictly punish these people," the report said.
Social order violations
According to the Ministry of Public Security's annual report, more than 57,460 social order violations such as gambling, weapons-related crimes, fighting in public or damaging public property were recorded across the country.
Crimes involving weapons, explosives and gambling are common across localities, the report said.
Although the number of violations represents a year-on-year decrease of 5.63 per cent, the incidence of violent murders increased, Public Security Minister Tran Dai Quang said.
Of the social order violations, charges of monetary mismanagement were brought against 2,232 people this year. Most of them were charged with taking advantage of loopholes, especially in the fields of investment, infrastructure construction and real estate.
Many abused their power or position to acquire property, conduct trade fraud and form smuggling rings that negatively affected State budget collections, public health management and monitoring environmental issues.
The National Assembly Committee for Judicial Affairs praised efforts by the Government, the Supreme People's Court and the Supreme People's Procuracy in preventing and countering illegal activity.
However, the committee said, the report failed to cover all areas of socio-economic life; identify the anti-corruption responsibility of ministries, agencies and localities; nor propose countermeasures to many problematic crimes. — VNS