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  • “Park Won Soon Act,” Six Months after its Implementation about 81% of citizens said “It has improved the level of integrity in the public sector.”

    SMG 1220
  • - After conducting a public survey on the “Public Sector Innovation Measures,” the Seoul Metropolitan Government made an announcement regarding the performance, limitations, and future direction of the measures.

    - Approximately 73% of citizens answered that “It will have a positive impact on raising the reliability of citizens towards the public sector,” and nearly 82% of Seoul City officials responded that “It has improved the level of integrity in the public sector.”

    - The number of crimes committed by public officials dropped about 1/7 of the previous number, and the number of cases of corruption and irregularities committed by public officials reported through hotlines increased more than ten-fold.

    - Public institutions in Tianjin, Zhejiang, and Shandong, in China, sent representatives to visit the Seoul Metropolitan Government and benchmark the system.

    - Limitations in terms of implementation were identified and attributed to the absence of legal restraints; thus, the Seoul Metropolitan Government plans to improve the system while increasing employee participation.

    “Park Won Soon Act,” Six Months after its Implementation about 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.

    Innovation Measures

    • ① Establish a new system that mitigates the conflicts of interest between the public and private sector.
    • ② Set up a system to eradicate fraud and illicit solicitation.
    • ③ Strengthen the “one-strike” system for public officials receiving bribes.
    • ④ Reinforce the safety management system and the responsibility of high-level public officials.
    • ⑤ Establish a measure to root out corrupt officials (e.g. re-employment of retired public officials, etc.).

    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)

    Reporting Cases
    Total Illicit Actions by Senior
    Officials
    Report of Corruption and Irregularities
    Involving Public Officials
    Illicit Solicitation
    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 ~
    March 2014
    72 0 56 0 16 0

    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.

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