The Vietnamese public believes that corruption is a national problem and that the traffic police are the worst offenders, according to a poll published Tuesday by state inspectors and the World Bank.
The cops were followed by land management, customs, and construction agencies, the inspectors said in a press release.
Those conducting the survey suggested more media rights, more transparency in policymaking, and less red tape to combat corruption, which is among the three top public issues along with prices and food safety.
The survey polled more than 5,460 people including 1,058 business people in 10 cities and provinces, and 1,801 state officials.
It found 82 percent saying corruption is “common” or “very common” around the country, and more than 75 percent considering it a “serious” problem.
Corruption was personally witnessed by 45 percent of the subjects, while 44 percent of businesses people and 28 percent of common people have paid bribes. But they said they were not too bothered by it since it helped smooth business and gain more than the bribes they paid.
The survey also found a large proportion willing to fight corruption: 52 percent of businesses are implementing anti-corruption activities and 43 percent of people said they would expose corruption.
Inspectors suggested that the government should give more rights to the media since most of the businesses – 80 percent – said they were aware of corruption cases only due to media reports, and more than 8 percent said many corruption cases remained in focus only because of the media.
They said reporters should get support like training in investigation skills and access to likely corruption cases.
Fiona Lappin, chief representative of the UK Department for International Development in Vietnam, said improved transparency in policymaking has helped reduce bribery in Ho Chi Minh City and the southern provinces of Dong Thap and Tay Ninh by 40 percent.
She said simplifying administrative procedures has also helped reduce bribery in some localities by 30-40 percent, news website VnExpress reported.
Tran Duc Luong, deputy general director of the State Inspectorate, said the survey was a “meaningful” resource for policymakers and social researchers.
The postal system, the media, treasury, and security police were at the bottom of the list of shame.
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