Philippines Get Poor Marks in Rule of Law Index

The Philippines received very poor to poor marks in the World Justice Project’s “Rule of Law Index”. The Index, according to the report, is “a new quantitative assessment tool designed to offer a comprehensive picture of the extent to which countries adhere to the rule of law in practice”.

According to the report, the Philippines scored very poorly and placed last or seventh out of seven Southeast Asian countries surveyed in the areas of law and security (.57), fundamental rights (.50), and effective criminal justice (.53). It was sixth, or second to the last in the region in the areas of Limited Government Power (.57), Absence of Corruption (.45), Clear, Publicized and Stable laws (.43), Regulatory Enforcement (.52) and Access to Civil Justice (.48). The Philippines ranked fifth in only one category: Open Government (.38).

In its Executive Summary, the World Justice Project defined the rule of law as rules-based system where four universal principles are upheld: The government and its officials and agents are accountable under the laws; The laws are clear, publicized, stable and fair, and protect fundamental rights, including security of persons and property; The process by which laws are enacted, administered and enforced is accessible, fair and efficient; and Access to Justice is provided by competent, independent and ethical adjudicators, attorneys or representatives and judicial officers who are of sufficient numbers, have adequate resources, and reflect the make-up of the community they serve.

In its “Regional Highlight”, the report observed that in East Asia and Pacific “Wealthier countries such as Japan , Australia , Singapore and South Korea score high in most dimensions. In contrast, Indonesia , the Philippines and Thailand generally rank significantly lower than the wealthier countries in the region”. Relative to the world, the report concluded: “The Philippines falls within the bottom half of the rankings, even when compared to similarly situated countries, particularly in the areas of stable laws, access to justice and corruption.

The report also reported that as experienced by the people, 87% of 1000 respondents from Manila, Cebu and Davao said that they have not experienced a burglary within the last three years. Out of the 13% that responded that they have in fact experienced burglary, 51% reported the crime to the police, while 49% did not. On mechanisms to enforce a contract or to recover a debt, only 5% of the respondents went to court and expected the process to last 1 to 3 years, while 27% of the respondents resorted to direct renegotiation and 23% took not action. These figures can be read as indicative of a lack of trust in the Philippians judicial system by the individuals who took part in the survey.

The study defined government powers as “the means by which the powers of the government are limited and by which they are held accountable under the law”. In its study on corruption, the report considered three forms of corruption: bribery, improper influence by public or private interests, and misappropriation of entrusted public resources.

In measuring the rule of law, the report first developed the conceptual framework summarized in the Index’s ten factors in consultation with academics, practitioners and community leaders around the world. A questionnaire was then developed based on the conceptual framework and administered by experts and reputable polling entities. A team then collected and mapped the data into 49 sub-factors. A final ranking was made using a five step process. The data was then subjected to several tests to identify possible biases and errors. The findings were then subjected to a sensitivity analysis by the European Commission’s Joint Research Centre.

The report indicated the following individuals as Honorary Chairs of the project: Madelaine Albright, James Baker III, Stephen Breyer, Jimmy Carter, Warren Christopher, Hilario Davide Jr, William Gates Sr, Ruth Bader Ginsburg, Anthony Kennedy, Sandra Day O’ Connor, Desmund Tutu, Paul A. Volker, among others.


7 comments on “Philippines Get Poor Marks in Rule of Law Index

  1. Rey Chai says:

    On or about 9:00PM dated January 6, 2011 the residence of Pontalba family located at Pag-asa Compound, Ampid I, San Mateo, Rizal was rush through by seven (7) unidentified male personnel armed with 5 short and 2 long firearms (2 out of 7 were later identified as PO2 Luis Jumok and PO1 Giovanni Aquino). The armed men smacked spouses Samuel and Cristina Pontalba and threaten all the nearby people with their firearms including the three minor children of Samuel and Cristina. The armed men seized some personal belongings of the family. Thereafter, Samuel and Cristina were forcibly brought to Rizal Provincial Police Office (RPPO), located at Cabrera Road, Barangay Dolores, Taytay, Rizal, detention cell for unknown reason. In the evening of January 8, 2011, Samuel and Cristina were released from the custody of the abductors after paying the total amount of PhP160,000.00 to PO2 NOMER RAYMUNDO and PO1 GIOVANNI AQUINO.

    When this incident was personally brought to the attention of the Provincial Director of RPPO, P/SSUPT MANUEL CESAR PRIETO, the latter tried to cover-up his subordinates. According to P/SSUPT PRIETO, it is against the law to line up his policemen. This statement was back up P/CINSP LUMACTOD and P/SINSP DELIZO.

    This type of modus operandi is the usual practice of scalawags (HOODLUMS IN PNP UNIFORM). Unfortunately, only few have the guts to file a complaint due to financial restraint and fear of retaliation from these criminal minded public servants. Policemen have the audacity to perform this kind of nefarious activity because they are protected by their superior. In short, they have the blessing from the higher up for whatever illegal act they may want commit for the purpose of monetary considerations to the extent of victimizing even innocent people.

    This despicable incident was published by JUN FERRER at the back page of Remate Tonight last January 27, 2011 the day after the filing of an administrative complaint at IMIS, NAPOLCOM. It was also featured at TUTOK TULFO television program anchored by ERWIN TULFO last January 29, 2011 at ABC 5.

    PUBLIC OFFICE IS A PUBLIC TRUST. Police officers are expected to maintain peace and order, to enforce the laws of the land, to protect and serve the people. Is this the kind of protection we expect from our police officers who draw their salaries from the people’s taxes? How can we trust police officers if they are responsible in this kind of ghastly crime? Worst, they are using government resources to commit heinous crime such as this.

    The perpetrators of this crime must not be allowed to get away with it because of the bad example such a behavior will give to other government employees and the very bad image it will create for the Philippine National Police organization.

    I sent a letter to Senate President Juan Ponce Enrile the inform the latter regarding this incident last January 31, 2011.

    • harryroque says:

      Let me know how I can be of assistance

      • Rey Chai says:

        Thanks in advance I really need your support in the interest of the general public. I am aware that I am placing my personal safety at great risk because of this gruesome crime. Cellphone No. 0932-4923176

      • Rey Chai says:

        ang reklamo po ay sa ncr, nbi naisampa at hawak po ito ni atty. janet francisco pero mukhang maimpluwensya ang mga respondents paano po kayo makaka-usap ng personal hinggil dito kawawa naman po ang mga biktima.

  2. Renato Pacifico says:

    Of course, I knew all that ! I watch Quien Tiene la Razon, Judge Judy, Sans Auccon Dotte, I LEARN FROM THESE SHOWS THAN from idiot peryodistas !!!! Gen. Reyes committed suicide. Another graduate from Harvard. Idiot peryodistas has already claimed it was suicide. Like Trining Failon it will be another mystery. Some scapegoate will get be the triggerman thru GUILTY-BY-AFFIDAVIT !!!!

  3. Renato Pacifico says:

    Ampatuan was already found guilty by AFFIDAVIT because he is not the pet of idiot peryodistas. Broadcastger Failon got off the hook after cleaning the crime scene free of crime and evidence. He was not charged of obstruction of justice. And To think Failon should know considering his ‘EXPERIENCE” as a journalist. If this is the showing of journalist I JUST WONDER HOW THE REST OF THE FILIPINOS THINK?

  4. Nonoy Oplas says:

    Out of 35 countries covered in that report, here is the Philippines’ ranking:

    * Absence of corruption: 26/35
    * Clear, publicized and stable laws: 24/35
    * Fundamental rights: 26/35
    * Access to civil justice: 28/35
    * Effective criminal justice: 20/35

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