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Anti-graft lobby makes proposals to junta

The Anti-Corruption Organisation of Thailand yesterday called on the National Council for Peace and Order to press ahead with anti-graft procedures and mechanisms, appoint a committee to examine the rice-pledging scheme and push through three laws to seize the property of embezzlers.

ACT asked, as one of four issues, the NCPO to proceed with rooting out corruption through the amendment of laws and regulations that hamper state agencies from preventing and suppressing graft, Pramon Sutivong, ACT chairman, told a press conference yesterday.

A system to drive action plans against corruption should also be set up, he said.

The current situation is proper for reform of anti-corruption measures at the operating, local and national levels, Pramon said.

The NCPO was urged to promote and authorise anti-corruption organisations, including the National Anti-Corruption Commission, the Public Sector Anti-Corruption Commission and Office of the Auditor-General, to work independently and efficiently.

A "people's mechanism" should be established to allow the public to join inspections of state operations such as information disclosure and key procurement, while general elections and local administrative organisations should be reformed for national leaders' good governance, accountability and morality.

While the NCPO is in power, state agencies will propose projects and mega-projects to it, so the junta may have people and experts to participate in the projects from beginning to end with more attention on procurement for transparency, he added.

Sompol Kiatphaibool, ACT vice chairman, said the NCPO now could rapidly solve problems, particularly payment to rice farmers.

However, there remained no transparency in the damage from the rice-pledging scheme, and the council may launch a specific committee to inspect the project and disclose information to the public urgently.

He also expressed no suspicion over the three economic advisers to the NCPO, given their knowledge and work experience.

Mana Nimitmongkol, ACT director, also urged, besides the four issues, the NCPO to push for three legal drafts, which have been signed with the United Nations, as had been proposed to the Cabinet twice.

They involve corruption cases that will not lapse by prescription, cross-border delivery of corruption wrongdoers into legal custody, and property seizures in corruption cases.

The NCPO may need to push for a legal draft on an independent organisation for consumer protection.

The bill was under the House of Representatives' consideration.

The NCPO should set a policy for all state enterprises to practise good governance equal to companies listed on the Stock Exchange of Thailand. That may be a criterion for performance appraisal of state enterprises for transparency, he said.


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