Inter-Parliamentary Initiatives for Democracy

Manila Bulletin, October 27, 2012 | Go to article overview

Inter-Parliamentary Initiatives for Democracy


WITH Senator Franklin Drilon as Head of Delegation, Senators TG Guingona, Bongbong Marcos, Pia Cayetano, and I attended the 127th Inter-Parliamentary Union (IPU) Assembly in Quebec, Canada, last week, on October 21 to 26.

The IPU adopted "Better Parliaments, Stronger Democracy" in October, 2011, as the guiding principle of its strategy from 2012 to 2017 - a vision shared by the Global Organization of Parliamentarians Against Corruption (GOPAC).

GOPAC's regional arm, the South East Asian Parliamentarians Against Corruption (SEAPAC) and the Philippine Senate will host the 5th Global Conference on Anti-Corruption in Manila in January, 2013. The conference, themed "Good Laws. Good Leaders. Good Citizens," is expected to draw 500 leaders from all over the world.

Senators Drilon, Guingona, and Marcos joined me in extending a personal invitation to the IPU participants to attend the GOPAC conference, widely considered as one of the largest anti-corruption events in the world.

Acemoglu and Robinson, in their seminal book "Why Nations Fail," note that when people in power use economic and political institutions to benefit themselves over the rest of the country, they create a vicious cycle of "extractive institutions" that leads to the failure of the state. Curbing corruption is a key component to ensure long-term economic growth for our country and the ASEAN region.

It is imperative for policymakers to safeguard institutions from abuse. This is one of the objectives of the 5th Global Conference - to equip parliamentarians with the knowledge and tools to enact responsive and effective legislation. …

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