HCM CITY — HCM City authorities will step up inspections of agencies working in housing and land management in the coming months in an effort to stem rising corruption.
People's Committee Chairman Le Hoang Quan told a meeting of the city's Corruption Prevention Steering Committee that corruption was rife in several divisions of the municipal administration as well as administrations at the ward, commune and district levels.
He said a recent investigation had found 68 cases of paper procedures unsolved because related petitions were transferred from one agency to another with no one taking the responsibility of dealing with them.
However, reports submitted at the meeting also said that the widespread corruption at all levels were not of great magnitude. Most of the cases had to do with officials taking "tips" for smoother procedures.
As of July, 135 inspections had been conducted and 26 agencies found engaged in wrongdoing with the total amount involved estimated at VND4 billion (US$191,000). Seven cases were brought to court.
A significant part of "emerging" corruption mostly concerned construction permits and land use transfers at ward, commune and district levels.
In one case, residents accused a commune administration of recording that a family owned 21,000sq.m of land though the actual area was 5,000sq.m.
In the remaining six months of the year, inspections will focus on agencies engaged in land management including the departments of natural resources and environment, construction, planning and architecture.
In major cases, the culprits will be brought to court by the year-end, the meeting heard. — VNS