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Υπ. Of Justice: NO to investigative powers in the Independent Anti-Corruption Authority

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Υπ. Of Justice: NO to investigative powers in the Independent Anti-Corruption Authority

The Ministry of Justice and Public Order does not agree with the transfer of investigative powers to the Independent Authority against Corruption, because it wants to ensure the independence of the Authority and non-overlap with other institutions such as the Attorney General, the ministry said in a statement.

In a statement of the Ministry, after it is noted that today before the Legal Committee of the House of Representatives continued the article discussion of the bill entitled “The Law on the Establishment and Operation of an Independent Authority against Corruption 2020”, it is pointed out that this is an important establishing an Independent Body based on good international practice and the requirements of international law with the main responsibility of combating and combating corruption, which is a key factor in restoring citizens' trust in the State, for the effective and good operation of the Institutions as well as for the improvement of the professional and investment environment.

The passage of this bill is a precondition for the promotion of the discussion and voting in law and the bill entitled: “The Law on Transparency in Public Decision-Making Procedures and Related Issues 2019” (lobbying), is added to the announcement.

It is stated that on the basis of a report of the European Commission for our country in which the absence of a body coordinating and monitoring the problem of corruption was noted, the Ministry of Foreign Affairs prepared a Bill that provides for the Establishment and Operation of the Independent Authority against Corruption good international practices and requirements of international law.

The main responsibility of the Authority will be to take all necessary initiatives and actions to ensure the coherence and effectiveness of the actions of public services, the wider public and the private sector in matters of prevention, confrontation and fight against corruption. During today's meeting, the provisions related to the mission and responsibilities of the Authority were discussed, it is reported.

It is noted that the Authority is assigned a wide range of powers and responsibilities, including the following:
(a) to investigate, as a preliminary matter, matters relating to acts of corruption or acts of potential corruption, in the public, wider public and private sectors, and where criminal offenses are suspected, to inform the Attorney General of the Republic;
(b) keep a record of lobbyists;
(c) coordinate, monitor and evaluate the actions of public, wider public and private sector services in preventing, combating and combating corruption;
(d) cooperate with international organizations, bodies and agencies of the European Union or other countries to exchange best practices and obtain technical assistance for the prevention, response and fight against corruption;
(e) address issues of overlapping responsibilities between services or organizations involved in the fight against corruption, proposing a solution to resolve them.

The bill under discussion has already incorporated most of the suggestions submitted by various officials and bodies during the public consultation stage which began on 19.10.2017, the announcement states.

It is added that the Ministry of Foreign Affairs has evaluated and will continue to evaluate any proposals and suggestions made by the parties and the bodies involved, e.g. incorporated all the recommendations of the Commissioner for Personal Data Protection, the recommendation of the Auditor General for the process of termination of members, and many more. The BPPO does not agree with the transfer of investigative powers to the Authority precisely because it wants to ensure the independence of the Authority and non-overlap with other institutions such as the institution of the Attorney General, it is reported.

The DPPO welcomes the continuation of the debate with full respect for the parliamentary process and declares its presence in improvements and suggestions that will shield the independence of the Authority's work and enable it to deal effectively with corruption in the country.

ΚΥΠΕ

Gaps in the corruption bill – The problem is the involvement of institutions and bodies

Source: politis.com.cy

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