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Local governments, DPWH have most corruption complaints — DoJ 

LOCAL GOVERNMENTS and the Department of Public Works and Highways (DPWH) were the subject of most corruption complaints received by a special task force in the first half of the year, according Justice Secretary Menardo I. Guevarra.

Mr. Guevarra said on Wednesday the Task Force Against Corruption (TFAC) led by his department received 220 complaints from January to June 9, mainly involving “anomalous transactions perpetrated jointly by these LGUs (local government units) and (DPWH) district engineering offices.”

Other agencies with complaints include the Land Registration Authority, Department of Environment and Natural Resources, Bureau of Customs, and various government-owned and controlled corporations.

“Around 210 of these complaints had been acted upon quietly by the task force,” Mr. Guevarra told reporters in a group message.   

Of the total complaints, at least 15 cases were endorsed to the Office of the Ombudsman for further investigation, another 15 were referred to the National Bureau of Investigation for case build-up and possible criminal investigation, while others were referred to other government agencies for administrative investigation.   

To help prevent further cases of corruption, Mr. Guevarra said the Ombudsman’s office, Commission on Audit, and the Justice department are finalizing a memorandum of agreement “that will revive the deployment of resident ombudsmen in certain graft-prone agencies.”

The agreement is expected to be signed within July.

He added that the Justice department has proposed to work with the Department of Education (DepEd) to intensify values formation in the school curriculum, “particularly on the virtues of honesty, integrity, and love for country” among the youth.

“I have not received a formal reply from the DepEd, but I am sure that Secretary (Leonor M. Briones) will give her wholehearted support for intensified value formation among young students,” Mr. Guevarra said. — Bianca Angelica D. Añago

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