Tuesday, January 28 2020

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Government Inspectorate's efforts lauded in anti-corruption fight

Update: January, 14/2020 - 09:08
Deputy Prime Minister Trương Hoà Bình addresses the meeting reviewing the 2019 works of the Government Inspectorate in Hà Nội on Monday. — VNA/VNS Photo

HÀ NỘI — Deputy Prime Minister Trương Hoà Bình praised the Government Inspectorate’s efforts to clarify wrongdoings in several high-profile corruption cases that drew public attention in 2019.

During a meeting to review the top watchdog’s work last year and lay out tasks for 2020 in Hà Nội on Monday, Deputy PM Bình said that he was aware of the “tremendous pressure” the government inspectors faced when they looked into the case of State-owned telecommunication operator Mobifone’s illegitimate purchase of AVG’s shares, the loss-making Thái Nguyên iron and steel mill project, and severe violations at Đà Nẵng’s Sơn Trà Peninsula and HCM City’s Thủ Thiêm urban area, which all implicated senior officials, even up to a former deputy prime minister and former ministers.

“However, you have dutifully carried out your roles to arrive at accurate and objective results,” he said.

The intensified anti-corruption drive – with a systematic, comprehensive and no-holds-barred approach – had served as both a warning and deterrence, Bình said, adding that corruption and other adverse activities like loss-causing and waste had been restrained, earning the public’s confidence.

He noted that anti-corruption efforts played a critical role in maintaining public order, which contributed a great deal to the impressive socio-economic achievements Việt Nam attained last year.

Compared to 2018,  the number of mass complaints and denunciations dropped by a significant amount, Bình claimed, adding the number of settled cases in 2019 was also higher.

However, Bình pointed out numerous issues the Government Inspectorate needed to address, including unnecessary inspections with delayed reports, impractical proposals to deal with violations, and a small number of inspectors who failed to follow regulations.

Petty corruption also remained a rampant issue that plagued businesses and people, he said.

He urged the inspectors to focus more on “sensitive areas” at high risk of corruption, and cases that attracted public attention, while reviewing the responsibilities and accountability of leaders of ministries and local governments in the implementation of anti-corruption efforts.

Deputy PM Bình also asked that the Government Inspectorate to expedite investigations into cases the Central Steering Committee on Anti-Corruption had put on a special monitoring list.

According to the report, 6,601 administrative inspections and 227,386 specialised inspections were conducted in 2019, discovering violations worth VNĐ173.4 trillion (US$7.5 billion) in addition to the mishandling of 22,548ha of land.

The Government Inspectorate also issued recommendations for administrative punishments to be handed down to nearly 2,000 organisations and individuals.

It has forwarded its findings related to 94 cases involving to police investigative units for further action.

The inspectorate uncovered violations at 106 State agencies and units when it carried out reviews of the implementation of anti-corruption laws last year.

At the meeting, Deputy PM Bình awarded the Labour Order second class to Deputy Inspector General Trần Ngọc Liêm in recognition of his excellent work from 2013-17. — VNS

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