Transparency International’s National Integrity Study reveals that key Czech institutions suffer from lack of resistance to corruption and do not fulfil their role in anti-corruption efforts. The weakest pillars in the Czech Republic’s National Integrity System are prosecution service, public sector and police. Ombudsman, Supreme Audit Institution and Electoral Management Bodies scored the highest overall scores.
The assessment of the Czech National Integrity System (NIS) presents results of the research focused on readiness (or the lack of it) of key Czech institutions to counteract corruption. The NIS “pillars” include legislature, executive, judiciary, public sector, supervisory bodies (SAI, ombudsman), and also political parties, media, civil society and business, among others.
When the pillars are well-functioning, they constitute a healthy and robust national integrity system, which is also successful in combating corruption. However, in a system with non-existent or non-functioning institutions, with the lack of appropriate regulations and in which the institutions are not held accountable, opportunities arise for corruption with all of its negative effects. Therefore, proper functioning of the national integrity system is a necessary prerequisite for good governance in a country.
The study evaluates capacity of individual pillars, their governance and integrity, and their roles in the fight against corruption. While the institutions are generally characterised by relatively high capacity, most of them do not sufficiently fulfil their specific roles.
“Our key problem is high level of politicisation of public sector, which also applies to prosecution service and to the police. The result is a lack of willingness to actively investigate and prosecute corruption cases with political context“, says Radim Bureš, co-author of NIS study. The study also reveals that in the case of most institutions, there are huge differences between valid rules and their implementation. Radim Bureš comments: “The rules are simply being ignored“.
The analysis of law and practice across the NIS pillars reveals one major weakness of the system – its sanction and control mechanisms. There are three reasons for this:
In many cases, no such mechanisms exist.
Sometimes they exist but are not being used.
In many cases, the mechanisms exist and are used but on a selective basis.
More detailed analysis of the pillars shows that the institutions suffer from some other systemic shortcomings. While it may be said that there are some significant improvements in, for example, transparency of public sector, it is still very difficult (or rather impossible) to obtain important information concerning management of public funds or preparation of vital materials and decisions.
“Institutions with the highest score on integrity – ombudsman, SAI, and judiciary (courts) – lack sufficient influence to help improve the overall functioning of the system and the society“, says Petr Jansa, the author of NIS study.
The study presents a “snapshot” of individual pillars at the end of 2010 and the beginning of 2011. The development in 2011 has brought some new opportunities, as well as some risks. On the one hand, we are witnessing a number of positive changes in prosecution service. On the other hand, budget “cuts” may endanger proper functioning of the SAI or of the police force.
For any press enquiries please contact
Petr Jansa, Transparency International – Česká republika
M: +420 777 586 245
E: [email protected]
Radim Bureš, Transparency International - Česká republika
M : +420 733 666 008
T: +420 224 240 897
E: [email protected]