IPBC Urges Good Governance Practices in SOEs

Thursday Oct 23, 2014 – The Independent Public Business Corporation (IPBC) today released a Notice to all State Owned Enterprises (SOEs) that they are to take immediate action against bribery and fraud to deter corruption.

In the preamble of the Notice, the IPBC has provided examples of possible corrupt practices.  Pursuant to Section 46I. and 46J. of the IPBC Act (2002), IPBC has set the policy and directive to all SOEs to adopt a zero tolerance policy on bribery and corruption and incorporate into all contracts that they enter into an anti-bribery and anti-corruption clause which will impose on the parties the duty to:-

a)    Refrain from bribery and corrupt practices

b)    Report such corrupt practices to IPBC and Fraud Squad to deal with; and

c)    Terminate the Contracts where the bribe is involved

The IPBC has also instructed all SOEs to develop corporate compliance programs and anti-bribery and anti- corruption strategies. The anti-bribery and anti-corruption policy was passed by the IPBC Board in its General Meeting of October 21, 2014.

Managing Director of the IPBC Mr Wasantha Kumarasiri said that IPBC signed the Governance Charter with all SOEs witnessed by Hon. Ben Micah, Minister for Public Enterprises and State Investments and Section 46I Directive issued today is a further step to improve governance within SOEs and provide confidence to people and entities that transact with SOEs. He further said that SOEs provide vital services to the community and many of them are regulated services. Any cost inefficiency stemming from corrupt practices ultimately translates to the price charged to the customer. So, it is everyone’s responsibility to stop this burden on the public.

“There is simply too much at stake here. IPBC and SOEs are managing the assets of the people of Papua New Guinea. The country also has major investment partners who are showing great faith in the development of basic infrastructure. We must not be unfaithful to our partners because they also deserve better.”

“This is one area that I believe the IPBC and now the SOEs are capable of showing great leadership so that eventually the concept of anti-corruption and good governance will also filter down to the private sector, individuals and organisations that contribute to the social and economic fabric of our nation.”