Private sector seeks EO requiring companies to sign integrity pledge

By Kris M. Crismundo

MANILA, March 11 (PNA) — The Integrity Initiative, a private sector-led campaign that aims to strengthen ethical standards in the society, is asking Malacañang to issue an Executive Order (EO) that will require business entities transacting with government agencies to sign the Integrity Pledge.

Under the Integrity Pledge, the head of a private entity will vow that his organization will practice ethical business and good corporate governance and submit itself to assessment which will be validated by a third party.

Integrity Initiative Executive Director Peter Perfecto said in the sidelines of a business forum in Makati City Tuesday that the EO will intensify the fight of the country to curb and further eliminate corrupt practices in both public and private sectors.

The Makati Business Club (MBC), Management Association of the Philippines (MAP), and European Chamber of Commerce of the Philippines (ECCP), which organized the forum, submitted their proposal for the issuance of the EO late last year.

In their proposal, they are asking the Palace to require all government agencies to oblige all private entities doing business with them to sign the pledge in order to limit corrupt practices such as bribery.

Perfecto cited actions of the Department of Public Works and Highways (DPWH) which required its 600 suppliers and contractors to sign the Integrity Pledge.

The Department of Education (DepEd) also obliged its private partners, like publishing companies for textbooks, to ink the pledge as well.

The proposal also would require all private sector employees to report if their respective companies are into corrupt practices.

Perfecto told the forum attendees that they are hoping that President Benigno S. Aquino III will have his positive response before this year’s summit on Integrity Initiative which likely will take place in September.

Meanwhile, the Integrity Initiative brought to Manila Tuesday the second series of fora on Business and Anti-Corruption in ASEAN which is organized by ASEAN CSR Network (ACN) in cooperation with the United Kingdom Foreign and Commonwealth Office, the United Nations Global Compact, and the UN Office on Drugs and Crime.

The first forum was held in Bangkok, Thailand in November last year.

Following the Manila leg will be in Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia on Thursday and Yangon, Myanmar on March 18. (PNA)