Freeman Cebu Business

The growing concern for transparency

BUSINESS AFTER BUSINESS - Romelinda Girlie Garces -

More and more, the concern for transparency in transactions, whether it be with government or private, can no longer be ignored. It is as if people have finally come to the realization that the only way to sustain good business in this constricting world of economies, is to be open in the dealings and to keep things at its legal best.

The impeachment proceedings of Chief Justice Renato Corona, is just an example of how tired people have become of shady deals.

I am not saying the chief justice is into such transactions. I cannot make that conclusion yet. Time will make things unfold. And only when all evidence has been presented, and a verdict is arrived, can we make judgment heard.

If he is innocent, I know that people will still speculate. If he is proven guilty, some may just nod acquiescence while others will continue on with their quiet debates. Many are also looking at the whole system as a “cast the first stone” kind of thing. Apparently, people have their own misgivings about some of the gowned men and women as well. But for now, let us respect the system and not add to the cinematic effect of our country’s laundry work.

However, let us introspect at our own business. Did we in fact contribute in any way to spoiling the bureaucracy by encouraging corruption?

The recently concluded Trainers Training of the Asian Institute of Management on the advocacy against Corruption somehow documented approaches to avoid, confront or report irregular practices.

Vulnerable areas for business start from registration, building and business inspection, sanitary permits, employee registration and statutory benefit issuances, export and customs transactions and many more.

The clear avenue engaging in corruption is when people are in a hurry. Time more often than not provides the easiest excuse to get involved in a bribe, whether as the one offering the “gift” or being the recipient of such.

By planning regulated payments early so one does not tow the long lines, one is able to evade fixers and the temptation to succumb to “implied demands”.

One also has equipped himself with more knowledge of the law.

Even in traffic altercations, one will note that reason rises above the bribe. If you are confident about your knowledge of the law, the apprehending officer will not be able to slap you with a higher penalty more than you deserve, so that you end up paying an “arreglo” or arrangement instead of the legal fine which may not be that much really since you know the law. It may not even require the surrender of your license.

Again, even in cases like this, the arrangement is a result of your desire to move away from the hassle lines.

Corruption only occurs if two parties agree to be corrupt. One cannot accuse the other of being corrupt if he has also paid the bribe. Now, both of them are in the same boat.








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