(QCOSTARICA) President Luis Guillermo Solis is asking for the public to tell him what they think, not of him, but what they regard as corruption, in an effort to promote reforms and eradicate the practice.
The Deputy Minister of the Presidency, Ana Gabriel Zuniga, said on Tuesday the government will consult the public what they consider corruption in public institutions and what they would do, if they could, to eradicate it.
“We decided that it is essential to establish a public consultation on those actions and activities that they (the people) consider detrimental to their rights and categorize as corruption,” said Zuniga.
The Deputy Minister added that usually anti-corruption standards are defined by experts, legislators and government institutions themselves, without the opinion of the citizens.
“The people demand and cry out for participation,” said Zuniga when asked if it was appropriate for the government to make such inquiries of the people.
The plan, by way of a questionnaire on the website Gobierno Abierto (Open Government) will collect feedback from the people, which will then be put to a panel of experts to propose guidelines and law reforms to persuade public officials not to engage in corrupt practices.
“It is of no use a law that ultimately does not achieve the ultimate goal (…) if we analyze the Law against Corruption and Illicit Enrichment, the percentage of people who have been processed under this law has been minimal (…) we should think about how we can act preemptively to eradicate these activities and these actions which, in the end, affect public finances and the daily lives of citizens,” said Zuniga.
The Deputy Minister added that for this government, reforms to boost anti-corruption legislation without understanding what the priorities and activities that affect people are meaningless.