Ministry of Justice: With 13 dedicated GRECO recommendations, Romania fares better than 34-state average

Romania got fewer recommendations than the average of 14 registered in the 34 member states for which assessment reports by GRECO (the Council of Europe anti-corruption body) have been adopted so far of, the Ministry of Justice asserted in a release to Agerpres this Friday.

“The report makes 13 recommendations to the Romanian authorities: nine concerning the prevention of corruption among MPs, and four regarding the judges and prosecutors. (…) The Justice Ministry considers that the report captures in an objective and balanced manner the stage of the measures aimed at promoting integrity in the exercise of public office. The report also confirms the assessment made by the Justice Ministry on the need for a greater focus on preventive and educational anticorruption measures doubled by ensuring the stability of the anti-corruption legal and institutional framework, where institutions like the National Anticorruption Directorate (DNA) and the National Integrity Agency (ANI), but also courts are working with noteworthy results,” the Ministry of Justice informed.

According to the cited institution, GRECO makes proposals for increasing the transparency of the procedure for the appointment and removal from managing positions with prosecutor’s offices.

“The Justice Ministry takes note of this extremely topical recommendation and reiterates its option of exercising this legal prerogatives based on objective and transparent criteria of which the essential one is integrity. The Ministry of Justice, in cooperation with the Romanian Parliament and the Superior Council of the Magistrates (CSM), will make sure that the GRECO recommendations are reflected in the future National Anti-corruption Strategy 2016-2020, which is currently in under development,” the release says.

The Group of States against Corruption (GRECO) adopted the Assessment Report on Romania at its November 30 – December 4 2015 plenary meeting in Strasbourg, within the fourth assessment round started in January 2012.

The theme of this round was the prevention of corruption among MPs, judges and prosecutors.

The Justice Ministry underscores that the recommendations regarding Parliament activity are aimed at increasing the transparency and access of the citizen to information on legislative work, rendering lobbying activities transparent, the adoption and effective implementation of Parliament’s code of ethics, strengthening the restrictions on gifts, hospitality, favors and other benefits for parliamentarians.

The report also highlights the need to clarify the regime of incompatibilities and conflicts of interest, requiring ANI to take up a proactive role in the ex-officio management of the cases involving MPs.

The Group of States against Corruption – GRECO is a Council of Europe body set up in 1999, that aims to improve the capacity of its members to fight corruption by monitoring their compliance with anti-corruption standards. It helps states to identify deficiencies in national anti-corruption policies, prompting the necessary legislative, institutional and practical reforms. Currently it comprises 48 European states and the United States of America.

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