“Park Won Soon Act,” Six Months after its Implementationabout 81% of citizens said that “It has improved the level of integrity in the public sector.”
It has been six months since the implementation of the Seoul Metropolitan Government’s public sector innovation measures, the so-called “Park Won Soon Act,” which stipulates that public officials who receive even a mere KRW 1,000 beyond their regular compensation or work-related expenses should be punished.
In August 2014, the “Seoul Metropolitan Government Public Sector Innovation Measures” (a.k.a. the Park Won Soon Act) were announced, and the “Seoul City Public Officials Code of Conduct” and “Disciplinary Rules” were revised the following October. In March 2015, the city government set up a specific action plan to put the “Park Won Soon Act” in place.
About 73% of citizens answered that ‘‘It will have a positive impact on raising the reliability of citizens,” while around 81% responded that ‘‘It has improved the level of integrity in the public sector.”
The Seoul Metropolitan Government conducted a telephone survey (March 22~23) of 1,000 citizens, with nearly 73.1% answering that “It will have a positive impact on raising the reliability of citizens towards the public sector,” while approximately 81.7% responded that “It has improved the level of integrity in the public sector.”
* From the results of a survey conducted of 1,000 citizens from March 22 to 23.
The number of crimes committed by public officials dropped about 1/7 of the previous number, and cases of corruption and irregularities committed by pubic officials reported through hotlines increased more than ten-fold.
For the past six months, the number of crimes committed by public officials – acts in violation of the code of conduct set for Seoul City officials – dropped about 1/7 of the previous number (35 cases → 5 cases), demonstrating that the harsh measure aimed at eradicating corruption and irregularities has led to a tangible reduction in the actual crime rate.
According to a survey conducted of 1,933 Seoul City officials this month, about 82.3% responded that “It has improved the level of integrity,” and approximately 81.3% answered that “Tension among Seoul City officials is higher than ever after the launch of the Park Won Soon Act.”
Also, the extent to which citizens pay attention and monitor corruption and irregularities in the public sector has increased. The Seoul Metropolitan Government has established the “Park Won Soon Hotline” (September 30, 2014) to make it more convenient for citizens to report corruption, and the number of cases reported increased more than ten-fold (38 cases → 384 cases).
※ Change in the Number of Reports through “Park Won Soon Hotline” (As of March 16, 2015)
||Total||Illicit Actions by Senior
|Report of Corruption and Irregularities
Involving Public Officials
||Public Interest Reporting
||Special Treatment for Retired Public Officials
|Oct. 2014 ~ March 2015||384||153||131||3||96||1|
|April 2014 ~ Sept. 2014||38||0||16||0||22||0|
|Oct. 2013 ~
The “Park Won Soon Act” regularly benchmarked by the South Korean government, local governments, and foreign public institutions. As the Chinese government has recently taken steps to curb corruption and irregularities in the public sector, a wide range of public institutions from China, including the Tianjin Commission for Discipline Inspection (September 23, 2014), the Zhejiang Discipline Inspection Commission (October 16, 2014), and the Shandong Provincial Audit Office (March 13, 2015), sent representatives to benchmark the anti-corruption measures set up by the Seoul Metropolitan Government.
On March 31, six months after the implementation of the “Park Won Soon Act,” the Seoul Metropolitan Government announced the performance and future directions of the Act, and unveiled its plan to promote the ethical standards of the public sector, in order to meet the expectations of Seoul citizens, and consistently expand its anti-corruption efforts through the “Park Won Soon Act.”
The Seoul Metropolitan Government will strive to further raise the performance of the “Park Won Soon Act” while improving the system by asking the Korean government to revise related legislation. It also aims to lower the limitations of the “Park Won Soon Act” and implement the Act by promoting active, voluntary citizen participation.