Anti-Corruption Commission Says ‘No Plans’ to Examine Assets of Govt Employees

By May Sitt Paing 24 November 2015

RANGOON — Burma’s Anti-Corruption Commission has “no plans” to scrutinize the assets of government employees in order to guard against potential graft, the agency’s head told lawmakers on Monday.

During a Lower House session on Monday, outgoing lawmaker Tin Maung Oo asked commission chair Mya Win what measures had been taken against cases of bribery and corruption, and whether these measures had been successful.

In his reply, Mya Win stated that the commission had not made any plans to audit the possessions of government officials, citing the 18-month delay in the passage of parliamentary bylaws to determine the commission’s remit.

“I understand that the commission has difficulty in doing its functions while the bylaws are not in place,” Tin Maung Oo, a Union Solidarity and Development Party lawmaker for Shwepyithar Township in Rangoon, told The Irrawaddy after the session.

“Many have said that the commission cannot do anything. That’s why I asked the question.”

Numerous lawmakers have criticized the commission, which is largely composed of retired high-ranking military officers directly appointed by President Thein Sein, claiming that the body is ill equipped to tackle rampant corruption in the bureaucracy.

The commission was formed in March 2014 following the promulgation of Anti-Graft Law in August 2013. More than two years after the law was enacted, bylaws reviewed by the Attorney General’s Office are still awaiting parliamentary approval.

Mya Win told the Lower House on Monday that the commission had so far taken legal action against nine government employees, with a further 125 people reprimanded for violating the civil service code of conduct.