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Cambodian PM vows to root out corruption

Updated: 2013-12-09 16:45
( Xinhua)

PHNOM PENH -- Cambodian Prime Minister Hun Sen vowed Monday to get rid of rampant corruption during his new-term government (2013-2018) in order to further develop economy and reduce poverty.

"On the occasion of the International Anti-Corruption Day, I would like to reiterate the firm commitment of the fifth term government in stamping out corruption, which is a major obstacle to economic development and poverty reduction," the premier said in a message to mark the International Anti-Corruption Day.

Hun Sen ordered the Ministry of Education and the Anti- Corruption Unit to incorporate the anti-graft education into the national schooling system from next year as a part of a wider effort to uproot corruption.

"The leaders of ministries, institutions and all levels of authorities as well as private sector should clean up their houses through reflecting in the mirror, taking a bath and washing up all of the filth," he said.

Cambodia continued to rank among the worst corrupt countries in the world, according to Transparency International's 2013 Corruption Perceptions Index (CPI) released last week.    

The country had dropped in the rankings to 160th out of 177 countries in terms of public sector corruption.

During the celebrations of the International Anti-Corruption Day on Monday, there was a live concert featuring songs, anti- corruption messages, poetry, and short performances.

The Cambodian government considers corruption as a major obstacle to economic development, rule of law, democracy, social stability, as well as the main cause of poverty.

The country established the Anti-Corruption Unit in 2010. To date, the agency has arrested and brought a number of corrupt officials to court for legal action.  

According to the country's law, a corrupt official, if found guilty, will be jailed between five years and 15 years.