KUALA LUMPUR: The Government will improve its public procurement system, which was a factor that caused Malaysia's slide in Transparency International's Corruption Perception Index (CPI).
Prime Minister Datuk Seri Abdullah Ahmad Badawi said one way to improve the system was for the Malaysian Integrity Institute to conduct a study to determine the system's weaknesses and vulnerability.
“Once these are determined, we will be able to correct the weaknesses and hopefully reduce the delays and undesirable practices such as corruption,” he told reporters after attending a closed-door briefing by the institute.
Abdullah said Transparency International had rated Malaysia based on its perception on the country's performance between 2002 and this year, taking into account the procurement system.
Malaysia was ranked 37th out of 133 countries last year compared with 39th out of 146 countries this year.
Abdullah said both the private and public sectors should give their views on how to improve the procurement system for better implementation.
He also said the study by the institute would be useful in helping Malaysia develop its own indicators and indices on the degree of transparency and corruption in the country.
The drawing up of the indictors and indices is part of the objectives under the National Integrity Plan (NIP).
“We also have to consider the index that is presently used globally because when we use our own index, it does not mean we won't bother about the reports made by other agencies.
“We surely have certain aspects to consider when we want to determine the index we want to use,” he said.
The institute was set up in April to eradicate corruption and abuse of power while the goals of the NIP are to improve the delivery system, overcome bureaucratic red tape and enhance corporate governance and business ethics.
Abdullah said the NIP would act as the catalyst to raise the efficiency of the administration in the public service.
“We will upgrade our systems such as the tender system and other systems that the Government uses to procure products and services it needs,” he said.
Abdullah also said the Government was serious in its fight against corruption but needed co-operation from all parties.