Anti-Corruption Commission eyes more asset disclosure

Anti-Corruption Commission eyes more asset disclosure

The National Anti-Corruption Commission (NACC) is looking to propose that officials from the Revenue Department, Excise Department, and Royal Thai Police (RTP) be required to report their assets in the interests of enhanced transparency.

President of the Senate, Pornpetch Wichitcholchai, presided over yesterday's seminar to build awareness of the process and the importance of reporting assets and liabilities among parliament's members as part of an initiative to make legislators' affairs more transparent.

The seminar was attended by the second vice president of the Senate, Supachai Somcharoen, chairman of the NACC, Pol Gen Watcharapol Prasarnrajkit, deputy secretary-general of King Prajadhipok's Institute, Issara Sereewatthanawut, and parliamentary personnel.

Mr Issara said the seminar was aimed at developing an understanding of the process and the significance of asset and liability declarations, as well as the importance of officials performing their duties with honesty and accountability, adding some politicians may still lack such an understanding.

Mr Pornpetch emphasised that parliament's members are obligated to disclose their holdings and debts. Any failure to do so will result in the violating member being criminally charged.

"Public disclosure of assets is, therefore, like an act of demonstrating your transparency to prove you are not using your power to benefit yourself," said Mr Pornpetch.

According to Pol Gen Watcharapol, apart from verifying the accuracy and existence of the assets and liabilities reported, the NACC also needs to track the movements of the assets as they could be converted into a different type of asset to avoid suspicion of corrupt activity.

The NACC chairman added his agency will propose amendments to the regulations to necessitate that officials at high risk of corruption, such as those from the Revenue Department, Excise Department and RTP, report their assets.

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