Romania needs strong anti-corruption laws and an independent judiciary
Issued by Transparency International Secretariat
Transparency International and Transparency International Romania are monitoring the current parliamentary debates on draft legislation to see that provisions do not weaken the fight against corruption in Romania, including giving the Ministry of Justice the power to interfere in investigations if it appoints prosecutors.
Transparency International is calling for lawmakers to make appropriate improvements in line with what magistrates associations are calling for and abandon any changes that would have a negative impact on the fight against corruption in Romania.
“Transparency International supports the calls for strong anti-corruption institutions in Romania and for a strong Anti-Corruption Directorate. We agree with the demand that the new laws must not provide loopholes for the corrupt to evade justice and that the power to decide which cases are prosecuted should not lie with the Justice Ministry alone,” said Cornelia Abel, regional advisor for Transparency International.
Judges must be separate from prosecutors and it is necessary to regulate the career paths of judges and prosecutors as well as ensure independent judicial inspection. There should be no room for cases to be manipulated at the will of politicians.
Transparency International is a non-partisan organisation, as is its chapter, Transparency International Romania. TI Romania and its executive director Victor Alistar have made their concerns about the new legislation public. Transparency International Romania has published its recommendations to strengthen the laws.
Despite this, Transparency International Romania has been subject to a campaign to discredit its executive director Victor Alistar for his role representing civil society as member of the Superior Council of Magistrates (CSM). As an invited expert, Alistar has supported recommendations to limit the power of the Ministry of Justice over the appointment of prosecutors and to reduce the ability of the president to interfere with the appointment of judges to the Supreme Court of Justice. He has also advocated greater transparency at all levels of the CSM itself, including the publication of the reports of its decisions.
The full list of recommendations on the draft legislation made by Transparency International Romania can be read here. The chapter is calling for greater transparency, in line with international standards such as The International Commission of Jurists Practical Guide or the Transparency International Guide for International Best Practice.
Transparency International and its chapter will oppose legislation loudly that makes it easier for corruption and the corrupt in Romania to flourish. They did this in 2004 when the last version of this legislation was debated and will continue to do so.
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