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Code of Conduct

In: Social Issues

Submitted By nikkoacain
Words 1529
Pages 7
Concept Paper on Republic Act 6713- Code of Conduct and Ethical Standards for Public Officials and Employees
For so many years, the Philippine Administrative System has been evolving and adapting to all the demands of the changing environment. The PAS has undergone reorganization, decentralization, privatization and all sorts of tools to improve its service delivery to all Filipino people. All measures have been adapted to ensure efficiency and productivity among its people.
Despite those facts, controversies arose in the field of PAS. It was tainted with graft and corruption, and incompetence of the people working under its umbrella. Records will show how numerous and rampant was the malpractices in all areas of PAS.
The passing of Republic Act 6713 or more known as the Code of Conduct and Ethical Standards for Public Officials and Employees was considered the highlight of the Philippine Administrative System. The said law was enacted, framing all rules and policies that public employees must follow in fulfilling their respective jobs. It is also the government’s mechanism to ensure quality service and efficiency in the Administrative System. The RA 6713 includes the norms that employees shall observe in the discharge of their duties. First and foremost, they must have commitment to public interest. In all their dealings, they must always consider the benefit and welfare of the public. Since they are working for the public per se, then it is tantamount to the fact that they must discharge their duties, basically, for the convenience of the people.
Public employees must also exhibit professionalism, justness and sincerity, political neutrality, responsiveness to the public, nationalism and patriotism, commitment to democracy and simple living. All these norms are equally important and must be observed.
The Civil Service Commission will promote these through trainings, skills development and imposing merit system and the recognition of outstanding public employees. It is also tasked in the research development on measures on how to motivate employees to observe ethical standards.
All public employees must also respond to the letters and communications from the public with utmost professionalism under a reasonable time. They must respond within 15 working days from the time the letter was received. Their response must include the concrete action regarding the concern of the public, specifically written in the letter.
Office heads and other concerned employees must also be able to complete an annual performance report 45 days after the end of the year. This report will be made available to the public in regular office hours. This is a good mechanism in order for the public to see and keep track of all dealings in government offices. We can also see and judge their performance with these reports. Official letters must also be accomplished under a reasonable time and must contain at least three signatories. They must also respond and act promptly in all transactions of the public. All persons who want to avail services must be given time and equal importance. In this portion, comes the one of most important norms, political neutrality. They must all attend to the needs of the public without discrimination or undue preference to their political beliefs and party affiliation. They must not give partiality to people connected to their bosses. All public employees must see to it that all concerns are given equal time and importance. Another important provision under RA 6713 is the establishment of a system of awards and incentives. Under this provision is the formation of the Committee on Awards to Outstanding Public Officials and Employees composed of the Ombudsman as Chairman; the Chairman of Civil Service Commission as Co- Chairman; the Chairman of Commission on Audit; and two government employees to be appointed by the President as members. They are tasked to conduct review on the performance of the officials and employees in all government branches and agencies and to establish a system of incentives and awards to be given to the outstanding employees. Several standards are specified in the RA that must be taken in consideration in determining the recipients. These includes the years of service, consistency of performance, obscurity of position, level of salary, the unique quality of the achievement and the risk and temptations inherent in the work field. Meanwhile, the awards include bonuses, citations, directorships in GOCCs, local and foreign scholarship grants, paid vacations and the like. This provision is a great technique to motivate employees to do great and maintain professionalism and ethics in their field of work. This inspires them to uphold integrity against graft and malpractices. In addition to the unlawful acts and omissions of public employees specified in the Constitution and other laws, RA 6713 further specified some. They must not have any interest to any financial transactions under their offices. All public employees must disregard all financial motives in their jobs. They must rely on their salaries and possible incentives for their financial needs. Their positions should not be their instruments to gain financially.
Employees must not be employed to any private enterprise regulated by their office and engage in private practice of their profession unless specified in the Constitution or law provided that it is not conflict to the official functions. This is to avoid conflict of interest between their jobs as a government employee and as a private worker. Their primary job must be to serve the public at all times. They must dedicate their time to improve their services to the public.
They are not also allowed recommend any person for employment in a private enterprise which has official transaction with their office. They must not use their function to benefit other people close to them. If this malpractice happens, those enterprises tend to be given importance, basically, because they benefit from them. It’s a no-no in Public Administration.
Public employees must not disclose confidential information for their private interest or to give advantage to anyone. They must not use information which are not made available to public for several reasons. They are not also allowed to solicit or accept gifts fom any person in the course of their official duties in connection to any transaction of their office. But as to gifts from foreign governments, the Congress allows the acceptance of gifts as a mark of courtesy, gift as a scholarship grant or medical treatment or any travel grants for foreign travel consistent with the interest of the Philippines, permitted by the head of their office. These policies are to regulate the monetary or material gifts to be accepted by public officials and employees. RA 6713 makes sure that these gifts in one way or another doesn’t affect their jobs and doesn’t cause partiality to the public.
All public officials and employees must accomplish and submit declarations; and the public has the right to know their assets, liabilities, net worth and business interests of their spouses and unmarried children under 18 years of age living in their households.
The documents must be filed within 30 days after assumption of office, on or before April 30 of every year thereafter and within 30 days after separation from the service. This is technique of the government and the people to keep track of the wealth of the officials and employees and how it accumulated during their service. They must also identify their relatives in the government on the form, manner and frequency. All statements under RA 6713 must be available for inspection at reasonable hours. Those who request for the statements must pay reasonable prices. But these statements must not be used for purposes contrary to public policy and for dissemination to the general public.
The designated Committees of both Houses of Congress shall review the statements to determine if it was submitted on time, complete, in proper form and its truthfulness. The Head of the different government offices may also do the job but only concerning their office, subject to the approval of DOJ Secretary for the Executive; and the Chief Justice for the Judiciary. This provision is to ensure that all employees follow the rules concerning statements under RA 6713. This also prevents the public from defective statements.
Any public official or employee whether casual, temporary, hold over, or permanent, violating any provision in this Act shall be punished with a fine not exceeding the equivalent of 6 moths salary; suspension not exceeding 1 year; or removal depending on the offense. For cases punishable by heavier penalty under another law, different punishment applies. Private individuals who participate in conspiracy shall be subject to same penal liabilities.
RA 6713 talks much for the Philippine Administrative System. Viewing this law can tell how PAS may work efficiently with this use of well-made framework.
But truth be told, at some points, RA 6713 fails to prosper. Merit system is flawed and the deficiencies in the SALNs are just but pieces of the bigger picture. The government must act on this.
Let us hope and pray for a proper and firmer implementation of the law. If RA 6713 will prosper, then the Philippine Administrative System will prosper. Let us keep our hands up for the success of the country and for the welfare of the Filipino people.

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