Myanmar: Karen State Govt Secretary Detained for Alleged Corruption

The Secretary of the Karen State Government, U Pyone Cho was detained by the Myanmar Anti-Corruption Commission on Sunday, for allegedly being involved in corruption concerning the sale of a land plot in Yangon worth an estimated 100 million kyats where he served as the deputy permanent secretary of the home affairs ministry under Gen Ko Ko back in 2015.

To read more, visit the Irrawaddy here.

Thailand: New Law Must Rake in All Corrupt Figures

The recent National Legislative Assembly (NLA) has decided to approve a law on criminal procedures for holders of political positions that has drawn flak from the general public as it abolishes the statue of limitations for fugitive suspects and grants power to the Supreme Court's Criminal Division for Holders of Political Positions, which would allow cases which have gone to court.

In summary, this mean that cases which have gone to court and even had verdicts issued could be reviewed retrospectively. While the law would force politicians to reconsider commiting any unethical acts, critics have expressed negative views, citing the law as a reactionary legislation against former Prime Minister Thaksin Shinawatra who fled the judicial process after receiving a two year jail term for abuse of power.

To read more, visit the Bangkok Post here.

Myanmar Reform Plan Launched to Strengthen Civil Service

A four year strategic plan aimed at making the civil service more ethical and inclusive with an emphasis on tackling corruption has been drawn up by Myanmar's Union Civil Service Board with assistance from the United Nations Development Programme.

Four key objectives are a part of the plan:

  1. Strengthening Governance
  2. Meritocratic Promotions and Performance-Driven Management Systems
  3. Increase Staff Development & Training Opportunities
  4. Improve Transparency & Accountability

The plan comes at a critical stage as Myanmar's transition from military rule to a democratic republic after the victory of Aung San Suu Kyi's National League for Democracy in the country's 2015 general election.

To read more, visit the Global Government Forum here.

President Widodo Must Support & Protect the Indonesian Anti-Corruption Agency

Transparency International, along with its Indonesian branch are calling for the second time in two years for President Joko Widodo to publicly commit his support to protecting the KPK' as a series of repeated attepts by the Indonesian Parliament have been made to weaken the agency's independence so it can carry out its work without intimidation.

The attacks on the KPK are likely prompted by recent investigations earlier this year into the illegal procurement of an electronic ID system that implicated a number of lawmakers. Attacks on the KPK included legislation aimed at weakening its powers, including the authority to conduct wiretappings, which is the cornerstone of the agency's success in prosecuting graft cases.

To read more, visit Transparency International here.

Vietnam: New Law to Enable Corrupt Officials to Escape Death Penalty by Paying Back Stolen Money

Amendments to Vietnam's Penal Code which takes effect in January 2018 will enable cooperative suspects of bribery and corruption charges to instead have their death sentence commuted to life imprisonment should they aid investigative teams and return 75% of their illegal earnings.

The law however, proves to be a controversial part of the new penal code. Some lawmakers argue that it would weaken the fight against corruption; one of the main priorities of the Vietnamese Government.

To read more, visit the VN Express here.

Indonesia: KPK to Name New Suspect in e-ID Graft Soon

The Corruption Eradication Commission (KPK) has wrapped up its case screening on the electronic identity card (e-ID) graft case and expected to announce new suspect soon.

Up to four individuals have been named suspects in the bribery case, two of which are senior officials at the Home Ministry, one member of the House of Representatives followed by a businessman. The KPK expects to have another suspect and decision by the end of the month.

To read more, visit the Jakarta Post here.

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