Emphatic 'yes' to anti-corruption

PAPUA New Guinea’s long-awaited Whistle Blowers Bill was passed unopposed by parliament this week.
Emphatic 'yes' to anti-corruption Emphatic 'yes' to anti-corruption Emphatic 'yes' to anti-corruption Emphatic 'yes' to anti-corruption Emphatic 'yes' to anti-corruption

Powes Parkop

Staff Reporter

NBC News reports that all 90 members of parliament present in today's sitting voted in favour of the bill that will protect individuals who report cases of corruption at the workplace.
While presenting the Bill, Deputy Prime Minister and Attorney General Davies Steven said Papua New Guineans now had an avenue to disclose any suspicious impropriety within their workplace.
The Bill - according to Former Prime Minister and Western Highlands Governor Paias Winti - was introduced in early 2000 when the late Jeffery Nape was speaker of parliament but never made it through.
It was talked about in the term of the previous Peter O'Neill-CharlesAbel government but was also never tabled.
The Whistle Blower Bill 2020 forms part of the initiatives undertaken by the Prime Minister James Marape's government to address systematic corruption.
According to the Deputy Prime Minister, the Bill is a modest approach in establishing protection mechanisms for employees; however, is not the only solution to addressing the issue of corruption.
Under the proposed Pill, improprieties include criminal offenses, failure to comply with legal obligations, miscarriage of judgment, among others.
Any employee that makes a protected disclosure will be protected from being subjected to any disciplinary action, form being dismissed, suspended demoted or harassed.
Employees may under this Bill make protected disclosures to either a legal practitioner, employer, state minister or other approved authority.
Several senior members of parliament were given opportunities to speak for and against the Bill.
Though all members were in support of this important Bill National Capital District Governor Powes Parkop questioned why other state entities such as the Ombudsman Commission, the fraud squad and the police were not functioning as they are supposed to.
Marape said corruption was removing much of the country's income, adding the notion of nepotism and tribalism had tended to compromise many of these crime-fighting bodies.
Marape told parliament, that the huge show of support should signal the commitment of national leaders in ridding the country of corruption.
The Independent Commission Against Corruption (ICAC), which is a sister bill of the Whistle Blowers Bill, went through its first reading this week but will wait for the compulsory two months before being tabled again.


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