Cebu, Philippines (4 October) -- The political environment of the country today is the biggest threat to the Filipino people, not the conflict between government and Muslim/communist rebels although the latter continues to hound the country's political and economic growth.
National Security Adviser Norberto Gonzales said this during the national convention of government internal auditors at the Grand Ballroom, Crown Regency Hotel, Guadalupe, Cebu City recently.
"Politics in our country has become so bad that it has hampered the delivery of government services," Gonzales lamented adding that bureaucratic red tape has also affected the efficient delivery of the same.
The NSC adviser took a crack pot at the political opposition specifically in the senate that seemed to abuse its powers. Members of the senate insult their guests or those people who are invited to their investigation and he recalled when he was ordered arrested and detained at the senate for contempt.
"We have to face the issue of corruption squarely," he told the more than 400 government auditors nationwide that attended the event and adding that it has almost became a shame to be a public servant because people think that those in government are corrupt and cheaters.
He said, he was affected with that impression. He wanted to resign from the cabinet but he thought, why not make it a personal commitment to help the Arroyo administration fight corruption in the bureaucracy.
"Let's look at corruption in a practical way," he suggested that instead of running after the grafters, government should review and revisit systems. "I am against witch hunting, I just want to change the system that gives public servants opportunities to commit corruption," Gonzales added.
He then appealed to all public servants to rally behind him and make a personal commitment "not to commit corruption" in your job.
The NSC adviser was very charismatic with his influence that the Association of Government Internal Auditors (AGIA) vowed to support him with his cause.
Encouraged with the spontaneous response from the auditors, Gonzales said he will create or organize a 'good governance society center' where information about corrupt practices of government employees and officials are accepted as well as help find solutions to the problems of corruption in the bureaucracy.He further said that he is not yet sure how and what the organizational structure and operations would look like, but one thing is certain, this will be a society of government employees, officials and private individuals and groups that are more than committed to fight corruption in government. (PIA-Cebu/MBCN)