Last week I was in Brisbane at a conference and work shop co hosted by Griffith University and transparency International –Using Anti-Corruption to Protect Growth and Development in the G20 and Beyond.
Much of the focus of the work shop was to explore the national integrity system ( NIS ) and how various countries had interpreted the guidelines and come out with their reports.
While it was clear that Transparency International saw corruption as the key element it transpired that TINZ ( Transparency International New Zealand ) had not included this in their assessment .
Suzanne Snively made two presentations at one she pointed out that TINZ is not funded and they have trouble getting members, I guess this is evident when new members sign up and immediately become directors . She made no mention of the Members who were leaving because they were so overwhelmed out being outnumbered by the Government agencies which appear to control TINZ and hence the resulting finding that New Zealand has the least corrupt public sector in the world. see the NIS report here
We all do well if we blow our own trumpet , any way Suzanne’s presentations are
Suzanne Snively and Daniel King – A national perspective
Suzanne Snively and Daniel King – Adapting the NIS to a ‘developed’ country: environment, business and the Treaty of Waitangi
When referring to the presentation of Finn Heinrich – Where does it come from? How does it work? What is needed for the future? you can see that he refers to two Crucial Ingredients to provide Momentum for Anti-Corruption Reform they are
- Strong Evidence on Integrity System & Practice
- Engagement with key stakeholders in a country
Lets evaluate these criteria against the current New Zealand Climate
Strong Evidence on Integrity System & Practice
Currently we have a spat going on pre election between our two main parties. It is a Tit for tat and we are slinging mud to repel corruption allegations, this is basically our anti corruption system at work, name calling at school play ground level.
The latest spat has occurred after our minister of justice took time out on her ministerial trip to promote milk for a Chinese company of which her husband has been made director, I have reported on the matter in full at this link
The next blow came to National when Maurice Williamson was discovered to have been supporting the citizenship of Donghua Liu against official advice .
Last year the Mayor of Auckland was caught with his pants down and at the time Mr key had this to say “I’ve had plenty of people who’ve rung me up with information about Labour MPs,” he said.
“And I’ve done the same thing to every person that’s rung me. I’ve written it down, put it in my top drawer and kept it to myself. I’m just not interested in engaging in it.”
It is very obvious that the top drawer has now been opened and they have had to dig deep to find the dirt which they can throw back at labour.
The reality is that the Prime ministers act of keeping dirt in his top drawer is in itself a corrupt act as each and every incident reported to him should be passed on for independent investigation at the time the issue arises and not held on to until a blackmail-able opportunity arises
There simply is no integrity in stockpiling dirt on the opposition – this allows corruption to be traded off with corruption , each act should be independently evaluated and the perpetrators charged if evidence is sufficient.
Engagement with key stakeholders in a country
While Whistleblowers are seen as essential any where else in the world (Grzegorz Makowski – Cross-cutting problems in the NIS: corruption of anti-corruption policies; whistleblower protection; human rights protection) TINZ prefers to ignore us. this is like doing a report on the operations of a company and leaving out the shoppers .
There are two sides to any system, the one looking out and the one looking in. the systems my look in place but if they are not user friendly or are designed to be counter productive against corruption then the system has no integrity .
I would have thought that it would be a serious matter for some one to make an application for law enforcement powers using false information, after all people are taken to task for benefit fraud and the like every day , but it appears that the bigger it is the more people that are implicated and the more systems that are shown to be unsafe then more reasons exist to deny what has happened and simply carry on. look no issue .. too hard lets move on .
The key stake holders on the other hand who were engaged with were the members of TINZ, and the funders , these include Department of Prime Minister and Cabinet
TINZ appears to be too closely aligned with government so much so that those ministers who are engaging on corrupt practices rely on the NIS to refute any claims e.g.
Not bad since her ministry paid to get the report done .
I have again asked Suzanne Snively if I can join TINZ see my email here email application jun 2014 .. will keep you posted