I had a chance to attend a discussion organised by the Institute of Integrity Malaysia, located off Jalan Persiaran Duta last month.
The session was attended by civil servants from some governments, NGOs and a few politicians like Tan S G (vp of DAP) .
This was a nonpolitical discussion on how to improve the integrity of local councils in Malaysia.
I gave a proposal that perhaps it would be good to formulate an Index along the line of the Corruption Perception Index of Transparent International. We can call this CPI of local councils, or to make it more palatable, perhaps we can call it Performance Index of local councils , and it would be used to measure corruption, integrity and efficiency of our local councils.
I suggested that this index can be used to compare the efficiency and corruption levels of the various local council. Like the TI’s CPI, it should be made known and published in newspapers on a regular basis (once a year maybe), and let everyone in Malaysia knows about how their local council is performing, how corrupted or not corrupted are their councillors, and by having these indices, it would serve as a wakeup call for those councils that were ranked very low. Comparison and competition will introduce motivation (to do better than others) as well as a shame factor (for those deemed very corrupted councils) , and hopefully, it would serve as an incentive for each and every council to try to compete and outdo the others.
There must be integrity at 3 levels. Macro level and that is at policies level; meso level, and that is at insitutions, departments and councils levels,; and thirdly the micro level and that is the level of individuals – the politicians, civil servants and so on.
Only when there is integrity will there be morality, and both integrity and morality are precious commodities that are so lacking in our leaders, civil service and even many of the business people .