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Corruption investigations help boost trust in Gov't

Update: August, 27/2014 - 09:08
Illustrative image/ Photo doanhnhansaigon

DA NANG (VNS) — Viet Nam's criminal police force has investigated 1,378 corruption and economic offence cases since 2011, according to a report from the Public Security Ministry's Anti-Corruption Department.

The investigations, which focused on 3,450 offenders, reclaimed VND4.14 trillion (US$197 million) for the State budget. Corruption cases accounted for 46.5 per cent, according to a report by the People's Supreme Court.

Lieutenant General Nguyen Dang Yen, head of the department, said the police force had improved their capacity to investigate corruption cases.

"We uncovered serious violations such as those at the Viet Nam Shipbuilding Industry Group (Vinashin) and National Shipping Lines (Vinalines) as well as the Bank for Agriculture and Rural Development and Finance Leasing Company," Yen said. "The successful investigation of corruption cases has a positive impact on public opinion and prevents corruption."

However, he added, the anti-corruption police force also faced challenges when it came to increasing investigators' sense of responsibility.

"Ensuring police integrity is essential in gaining public trust and achieving public safety. Moreover, because the police are often the most visible and most encountered part of government, the level of confidence and trust held by a nation in its police reflects the trust and confidence held in its government," United Nations Office on Drugs and Crime (UNODC) country manager Zhuldyz Akisheva said at the opening ceremony.

Expressing gratitude that police and judicial reform was "at the centre" of the Government's anti-corruption efforts, she said the international peer review of Viet Nam under the UN Convention against Corruption and national self-assessment process led by the Government Inspectorate had produced several key recommendations for law enforcement to combat corruption.

Akisheva singled out the current revisions of the Penal Code and Criminal Procedure Code, which aim to strengthen the legal basis for fighting corruption.

"In this context, the Ministry of Public Security's work on police integrity is timely and should be considered an important contribution to the ongoing national efforts to address corruption," she said.

She also referred to the recent Universal Periodic Review process of Viet Nam, which made several human rights recommendations for the Government.

"I am glad to highlight that the Government has accepted most of them, including those on the need to strengthen law enforcement and justice institutions to better protect human rights," Akisheva said.

Chief Superintendent of the Hong Kong Police Evelyn Lam, Australian Federal Police Senior Liaison Officer to Viet Nam Commander Chris McDevitt, and representatives of the Netherlands Police also participated in the one-day workshop. — VNS

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