Tighter measures to strengthen integrity in public service

Tighter measures to strengthen integrity in public service

SINGAPORE - The Public Service Division (PSD) today announced new measures to strengthen integrity in public service.

These measures include restrictions on officers visiting casinos, as well as mandatory job rotation and block leave.

This follows a review, started in September last year, by the PSD to reduce the risk of public officers' indebtedness from gambling. As part of the review, it also took the opportunity to look into strengthening measures to reduce the risk of fraud and corruption.

From Oct 1, 2013, all public officers will need to declare within 7 days whenever they visit the local casinos more than 4 times a month or if they purchase an annual pass.

Stricter rules will apply for certain types of officers.

Those who are in positions that expose them to the risk of being persuaded to do something illegal and exploited, or whose misconduct will have significant risk to the reputation of the public service, will have to declare every visit to a local casino within seven calendar days.

Meanwhile, officers who enforce operations in the local casinos, or regulate the activities of or negotiate business arrangements with the local casino operators will be prohibited from visiting the local casinos, unless they are doing so as part of their official duties.

Officers remain prohibited from gambling during working hours or on official premises.

From Jan 1 next year, job rotation and block leave will be enforced for officers holding positions which are more susceptible to being suborned and exploited if the incumbent were to remain in the same job for too long.

One or both measures are in place for these officers, depending on the nature of their work.

Under the new rules, these officers should not remain in the same position for more than five years.

Some of these officers whose work is more transactional in nature will also be subject to block leave of at least five consecutive working days per calendar year.

ellenja@sph.com.sg

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