By Lade Jean Kabagani, October 31, 2021; Philippine News Agency

Manila – The Department of Human Settlements and Urban Development (DHSUD) has formed an Anti-Corruption Committee to ensure the integrity of services provided to the housing sector.

In a statement on Sunday, Secretary Eduardo del Rosario said the committee is part of the DHSUD’s commitment to provide sustainable projects for all.

He said the committee will serve as a venue for checks and balances on policies, programs, and operations.

“Ensuring full integrity among us, our backbone of honesty, while we cultivate service excellence,” he stated.

Under Executive Order No. 43 released in 2017, all agencies in the Executive branch are required to form anti-corruption committees.

Over the weekend, DHSUD appointed the panel members of the committee, coinciding with the culmination of National Shelter month.

“Let me also take this opportunity to thank the Presidential Anti-Corruption Commission (PACC) led by Chairperson Greco Belgica for uplifting the pride and dignity of the men and women in the bureaucracy through his stern and logical campaigns on good and clean governance,” del Rosario said in his speech.

Undersecretary Marylin Pintor emphasized the importance of pushing for anti-corruption policies, compliance practices, and enforcement trends within the department.

“As corruption has a very secretive nature, it is one of the most difficult crimes to investigate. We cannot allow such a despicable act to infiltrate this institution, which we have all carefully maintained clean and transparent,” she said.

Assistant Secretary Avelino Tolentino III, tasked to lead the committee, said their main goal is to ensure that “integrity and honesty” shall be maintained within the housing sector at all times.

“In all honesty, we can provide for numerous functions of each Anti–Corruption Committee, but it boils down to promoting a high standard of ethics in public service and that public officials and employees shall at all times be accountable to the people and shall discharge their duties with utmost responsibility, integrity, competence, and loyalty, act with patriotism and justice, lead modest lives, and uphold public interest over personal interest,” Tolentino said.

The committee panel members include Legal Service Director Michael Tezon; Administrative Service Director Alvin Claridades; Knowledge Management and Information Systems Service officer-in-charge and Director Nova Teresa Asor; and Internal Audit Service Director Stefan Ema Mae Corregidor.

They will be joined by a PACC resident evaluator and a stakeholder representative.