Digitalization efforts vital in fighting corruption: Palace

By Ruth Abbey Gita-Carlos

February 3, 2024, 8:07 am

<p>Executive Secretary Lucas Bersamin <em>(File photo)</em></p>

Executive Secretary Lucas Bersamin (File photo)

MANILA – The Marcos administration’s bid for digital transformation is crucial to curb corruption in government, Malacañang said on Saturday.

The government is currently undertaking initiative reforms, including the digitalization of government transactions, to fight corrupt practices, Executive Secretary Lucas Bersamin said in a statement as the Palace welcomed the slight improvement of the Philippines' standing in the 2023 global corruption index.

“We consider this result as both a challenge to do better and a reason for hope that the country is headed in the right direction,” Bersamin said.

“Earnest efforts are already being undertaken to implement the digital transformation mandate of the administration in order to streamline institutional processes and curtail opportunities for graft and corruption.”

The digitalization efforts, he said, are in line with President Ferdinand R. Marcos Jr.’s call for the government "to show in deeds, not in words, that it is deserving of the people's trust.”

“With the necessary transformational measures being put in place, let us be optimistic and assured that the government will not fail or falter in its steadfast commitment to effectively provide efficient and transparent public service,” Bersamin added.

The Philippines ranked 115th among 180 countries in the 2023 Corruption Perceptions Index (CPI) of global anti-graft watchdog Transparency International, improving from its 116th ranking in 2022.

The country obtained a CPI score of 34 out of 100, a notch higher than its score of 33 in 2022.

The 180 countries and territories in the world are scored based on the perceived levels of public sector corruption, with 0 being “highly corrupt” to 100 being “very clean.”

The 2023 report released this week found that more than two-thirds of countries scored below 50 out of 100, “which strongly indicates that they have serious corruption problems.”

It also showed that the global average is stuck at only 43, while the vast majority of countries have made no progress or declined in the past decade. (PNA)