Next year (2016) is a momentous event for the Presidential Commission on Good Government (“PCGG”) as it celebrates its 30th anniversary and at the same time marks the successful six-year run of the PCGG under the Aquino administration. It can be remembered that the PCGG, tasked to recover Marcos’ ill-gotten wealth, is the very first government office established by the Aquino government after the EDSA Revolution and was founded on the principles of integrity, credibility and accountability in public service.
As part of its commemoration, the PCGG initiated to establish, within the agency, the Integrity Management Program (“IMP”), a joint project of the Office of the President (“OP”) and the Office of the Ombudsman (“OMB”) which seeks to build and strengthen a culture of integrity in all government institutions. The IMP is the government’s flagship anti-corruption program and consolidates the best practices and lessons learned from the previous anti-corruption programs of the government namely, the Integrity Development Review (“IDR”) and the Integrity Development Action Plan (“IDAP”).
Last 12 October 2015, the PCGG invited a team from the OP and the OMB, led by Atty. Froilan D. Montalban, Jr. and Dir. Hilario A. Favila, to conduct an orientation seminar for the Commission regarding the implementation of Integrity Management Program. The IMP is a multi-staged and multi-stakeholder program which is designed to enable a government agency to properly identify and address key risk areas through the formulation of capacity-building initiatives and the setting up of pertinent anti-corruption measures. The IMP is centred on the United Nations Development Programme (“UNDP”) good governance principles which includes effectiveness, responsiveness, strategic vision, accountability, transparency, and rule of law. Key members of the PCGG were briefed on the various stages of the IMP and the processes and requirements involved in each stage; moreover, the team from the OP and the OMB expressed their commitment to assist and lend their expertise to the PCGG in this worthy endeavour.
For the PCGG, one of the first steps is to create an Integrity Management Committee which shall take the lead in the planning and the implementation of the IMP in the agency. Next, the PCGG will undergo an integrity assessment to determine key integrity issues and corruption vulnerabilities. Based on the results of the assessment, the PCGG must develop and implement an Integrity Management Plan which properly addresses the key issues previously identified.
Although many steps still lie ahead, the recently held Orientation Seminar marks the promising beginning of the PCGG’s objective to institutionalize integrity, honesty, dedication, and accountability within the agency. The IMP reflects and embodies the commitment of the PCGG in upholding the very principles on which it was founded.