NEWS

This section provides readers with the latest news regarding anti-corruption issues worldwide.

Unveiling the Natural Resource Governance Institute (NRGI)

It is my great pleasure to announce the start of an exciting new chapter of our work to help people benefit from their countries’ endowments of oil, gas and minerals. Beginning today, we have a new name: the Natural Resource Government Institute. Our organization, now with over 70 talented staff around the globe, is the result of the recent merger between the Revenue Watch Institute and the Natural Resource Charter. Together, we are thrilled to continue our journey under this new banner. [field_txt_news_link]

Japan temporarily halts aid to Vietnam over bribery case

Japan has temporarily suspended official development aid to Vietnam over a bribery case, officials said Tuesday, dealing a possible blow to Tokyo's efforts to shore up its relationship with Hanoi. Fresh yen-loans and funding for an ongoing urban railway project have been halted after six Vietnamese railway officials were detained over allegations of corrupt payments, the foreign ministry said in a statement. [field_txt_news_link]

Kenya pays price over graft scandal to ease bond sale

It should have been a triumph that would revive Kenya's status as a favourite with foreign investors. Instead, the country's long-awaited debut on the sovereign bond market has become entangled in a decade-old corruption scandal. Eight years ago, Uhuru Kenyatta - now Kenyan president but then just an opposition lawmaker - led the parliamentary accounts committee investigating what became known as the "Anglo Leasing" scandal. The committee looked into a series of 18 grossly overpriced security contracts with ghost companies worth a combined $770m, and branded them "a scam". [field_txt_news_link]

Doctor exposes China's medical corruption epidemic

Ordering excess drugs and treatment, and taking bribes from patients and drugmakers, are open secrets in China's over-burdened health sector, according to a news story by Agence France-Presse. "The failings of the system provoke so much anger that reports routinely emerge of patients attacking and killing medical personnel," reports AFP. "In April a 45-year-old man unhappy with his circumcision stabbed a doctor to death in the eastern province of Jiangsu." [field_txt_news_link]

Liberia police dogged by graft despite decade of reforms

In the shade of palms lining Monrovia's Waterside Market, street vendors vie for customers, yelling to passers-by about their latest bargains while keeping an eye out for the ever-present menace of the police. Sitting behind her jewellery stall, 29-year-old student Zoe Freeman smiles nervously as she explains how officers in Liberia's capital regularly confiscate her merchandise and extort money from her. "Sometimes they charge you $10, another time you pay $20 or 500 Liberian dollars ($5.80/4.2 euros). The prices vary with different officers," she tells AFP. [field_txt_news_link]

India's mobile governance project wins UN award

A union communications and IT ministry project on "mobile governance" has won the second prize at the prestigious United Nations' Public Services Awards. The project, called "mobile seva" was launched by the Dept. of Electronics and Information Technology's(DeitY) in January 2012, and won in the category "Promoting Whole of Government Approaches in the Information Age" for Asia-Pacific. [field_txt_news_link]

Anticorruption bills gain momentum in S. Korea after ferry tragedy

Korean lawmakers are seeking to pass a set of anticorruption bills by June to ensure public safety and eliminate government cronyism to tackle the fallout from the ferry disaster that left more than 300 people dead or missing. Lawmakers hope the new legislations will root out decades-old government practices potentially harmful to public safety. [field_txt_news_link]

Cambodian NGO group wants integrity curriculum in schools

Education NGOs say Cambodian schools needs to include classes on integrity and anti-corruption. The Coalition for Integrity and Social Accountability says this is the best way to reduce alleged rampant corruption in Cambodia. “Whenever children are not honest, they can one day harm their parents, and that will affect the whole society,” Him Yun, the group’s coordinator, told a workshop in Phnom Penh. [field_txt_news_link]

Watchdogs need sharper teeth, says new TI report on South Asia corruption

Governments in corruption-stricken South Asia must allow anti-corruption agencies to investigate and prosecute corruption independently, Transparency International (TI) said in the first comprehensive study on transparency and corruption prevention in the region. [field_txt_news_link]

IBM to build cloud platform for Anti-Corruption and Civil Rights Commission in South Korea

IBM will build a cloud platform to assist the Anti-Corruption and Civil Rights Commission (ACRC) in South Korea to streamline operations and consolidate public service phone numbers into one call center. The new system will provide the backbone for ACRC electronic platforms such as e-People or its call service hub The 110 Government Call Center. The system will help ACRC handle more than 1.25 million complaints, 2.2 million civil petitions, and 30,000 administrative appeals per year, said IBM. [field_txt_news_link]

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