Public administration is defined as the activities, procedures and processes of performing and achieving government programs and policy objectives for the benefit of the general public or the people that the government sworn to serve (Brillantes & Fernandez, 2007). The heart of public administration is good governance that requires participation, pluralism, subsidiarity, transparency, accountability, equity, access, partnership and efficiency. It characterizes the actions and performances of political leader in power, of governing and exercising authority and power to govern.
According to Prof Leonor Briones, a public office is a public trust; therefore, public officers, officials and employees are at all times be accountable to the people, serve them with utmost responsibility, integrity, loyalty and efficiency, act with patriotism and justice and lead modest lives (Briones, 2009).
One broad definition of corruption is “the violation of norms of duty and responsibility for personal gain” (Angeles, 1999). A social problem happened to be a major stumbling block in the Philippines development. Corruption in the Philippines has been described as “the root cause of continued poverty” (Azfar Omar and Gurgur Tugrul, 2000), “pervasive and deep rooted” (World Bank, 2000) and a crippling hindrance to the economy and efficient governance (Asia Foundation, 2006). It exists from any levels, from the relatively small-scale and local to the office of the most powerful.
The abuse of the entrusted authority and power for private gain while in public office is generally termed as corruption that can be classified as grand, petty and political depending on the amounts of money lost and the sector where it occurs. Grand corruptions are those committed at a high level of government where officials distort policies or the central functioning of the state that enable leaders to benefit at the expense of public good. Petty corruption on the other hand pertains to the everyday abuse of entrusted power by low and middle level public officials in their interactions with ordinary citizens. Meanwhile, political corruption is the manipulation of policies, institutions and rules and procedures in the allocation of resources and financing by political decision makers who abuse their position to sustain power, status and wealth.
How good governance be operationalized in the Philippines rests on the type, character, attitudes and values of political leaders. The greater power comes with greater responsibility.
Rodrigo Duterte’s rise to presidency brought a sense of cautious optimism across all sectors of the society that has been clamoring for swift change to end corruption in the government, inefficiency in the bureaucracy, income inequality, and the proliferation of armed groups and other lawless elements. His rise can be best understood as part of a broader collapse of barriers-to-power, which is transforming politics both in the Philippines and in other parts of the world. His overarching policy thrusts are to reestablish law and order, to make Philippine growth inclusive; and restructuring the Philippine system of government.
The centerpiece of Duterte’s leadership is to suppress the three evils of the society such as crime, illegal drugs and corruption. These three evils he believes are undermining security across all sectors and hampering the growth of the domestic economy. He pledged to instill discipline with an iron fist for everyone to adhere to the rule of law and strengthen the country’s justice system. To be able to reestablish law and order that impinge on national security, he launched a focused, time-bound campaign against criminals, drug lords and corrupt government officials under the joint efforts of the PNP and the AFP (Manhit, 2016).
As public administrator, President Duterte has been exerting efforts for all national government agencies, local government units, and every institution in business and civil society to take guidelines and strategic directions into account; to align their own transformation programs with these guidelines and strategic directions to achieve cohesion and convergence for national development. His leadership of the bureaucracy is capped with the core values hinged on the love of country; subordination of personal interests to the common good; and concern and care for the helpless and marginalized.
Corrupt practices are like termites that eat up government resources that could have been provided to the people especially those who are mostly in need; these are hindrance to national security and survivability. Corruption impacts on societies in terms of freedom, health and money as well as undermines people’s trust in the political system, institutions and its leadership.
Eradication of corruption in our country will contribute in the solution of the problem related to developmental issue. In order to achieve that level, there is really a need to cultivate the following traits among Filipinos: Sense of integrity and accountability; Sense of common good; value of self-discipline and hardwork; and, sence of patriotism and national pride (Sen Shahani, 1988).
President Rodrigo Duterte as catalyst for change holds the torch for the country’s journey over the next five more years. He is seen as a leader with an iron-fist, an ordinary man against the oligarchs, a crime-fighter, and, a savior. His vision of a better future for the Filipinos regardless of ideology, religion, culture, socio-economic status, and geography is reflective of his unceasing, ultimate aspiration. Central to his leadership is national security and development for the welfare of the Filipino people. He believes that national security and development is the conquest of poverty and corruption in the government.