9 December: International Anti-Corruption Day. EUAM workshop including Ukrainian stakeholders and international community

December 09, 2014

On 9 December, International Anti-Corruption Day, the European Advisory Mission has gathered Ukranian and international anti-corruption experts to discuss the situation on the ground.

EUAM Head of Mission Kálmán Midzsei, opended the session stating that endemic corruption is a fundamental issue to be adressed by the European Advisors:

“We want to have a double approach dealing with the National Anti-Corruption Buro / Agency and in paralell strongly advising on overregulation reduction, the civil servants’ salary issues, the skillfulness of a critical mass of staff and the elimination of conflicts of interest situations. For Ukraine this year was the year of nation building, 2015 will be the year of state building”,

said Mizsei during the panel discussion with Serhii Drozach, the Deputy Director of the Anticorruption Policy Department of the Ministry of Justice; Ivan Presniakov, Assistant to the Deputy Head of the Verkhovna Rada Committee on fighting organized crime and corruption; Daria Kaleniuk, executive director, Anti-Corruption Action Centre (AntAC), Olena Kustova, Law Enforcement Section Legal Adviser, US Embassy and Aryna Satovska, coordinator, Ukraine Crisis Media Centre.

EUAM anti-corruption advisor Mika Aalto underlined the need for an efficient and functioning investigation body and courts sending a clear message to potential criminals by making them aware of the risk they run for being indicted and sentenced through their involvment in corruption. Aalto is convinced that the public needs information access, so to be able to crosscheck on and follow up a case.

The Ukranian legislation an mainly the laws on the new National Anti-Corruption Buro and Agency were on the panels agenda. Civil society people as well as the respresentative of the Ministry of Justice are convinced that this institution must play a key role in the future evolution, although the current law needs serious improvements (that are in a planning phase according to the Ministry of Justice) mainly regarding several clauses, applicable to the future members, like salary raises, selection criteria, polygraph tests, clauses that were dropped in the current version.

Most of the panel members think that the problem to face is to idetify the right reform actors to break the full corrupt society circle.

Finally the experts touched the communication facette including the releasing of results in terms of convictions, public involvment stimulation measures and a delicate handling of the salary increase communication.