Of all the complaints Anti-Corruption Commission (ACC) received so far, complaints on personnel management ranked second amongst nine areas of corruption, as stated in ACC Annual Report 2011.
The agencies against which public complaints were lodged most frequently include local government, corporations, private sectors, ministries and dzongkhags.
During the period of reporting, it ranked the third highest with 11% of the total complaints. These complaints cut across all sectors and levels and largely pertain to favoritism and nepotism during selection, recruitment and nomination processes.
“Such practices, if unchecked, can penetrate into public life influencing the behavior of public officials and citizens’ alike, personal ties and loyalty taking precedence over competence and merit,” states the report.
Impacts of corruption in personnel management results in unequal access to employment opportunities, trainings, promotion and moreover undermines hard work and honesty of public servants and private employees.
It may also cost many educated and talented people the opportunity to contribute to their agencies and the society at large. “Depletion of public trust is also a cost that agencies and government may pay,” the ACC report states.
The personnel emoluments budget for the civil service for last three financial years shows Nu.5257.913mn, Nu. 6,034.145mn and Nu.6333.042mn (source: Department of Budget & Accounts)
If the impact of de-motivation of civil servants because of abuse of power by senior public servants, favoritism and nepotism and theft of office time are monetized (no empirical study done), the scale of loss may be substantial, stated the report.
Even simplistically considering, 10% of civil servants not performing for reasons mentioned above, government may lose Nu.633.3mn in the current financial year. Considering the prevailing civil service culture of impunity and non-accountability, the loss to the country and the people may continue to increase.
The report also further states oversight agencies such as RCSC, Druk Holding and Investments and BCCI have to closely review the prevailing system of selection, recruitment and training nominations in their jurisdiction and accordingly amend related policies and laws to ensure transparency and fairness in the system.
The report states there has to be adequate check and balance mechanism built into the system including operationalising the system of declaring conflict of interest. Human resource management audit needs to be implemented and supervision and monitoring strictly carried out.
“A culture of integrity has to be built which demands exemplary leadership at the top and strong integrity policies and management system,” stated the report.
Besides these, performance management of civil servants also has to be professionalized so that the monthly salary is truly earned and trainings, increment and promotion do not continue to be a matter of right.
ACC received 456 complaints in 2011 as compared to 375 in 2010 and 512 in 2009.