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GRECO encourages Poland to pursue efforts in preventing corruption in the parliament and the judiciary

Press Release

Strasbourg, 25 January 2013 – The Council of Europe’s Group of States against Corruption (GRECO) has published today its Fourth Round Evaluation Report on Poland. It focuses on the prevention of corruption of members of parliament, judges and prosecutors.
The Council of Europe’s anti-corruption monitoring body (GRECO) acknowledges the solid legal framework established by Poland for preventing conflicts of interest, and ultimately corruption. Quite strict regulations on, inter alia, incompatibilities of posts and functions, accessory activities and mandatory asset declarations are already in place. Nevertheless, there is no clear understanding among the professionals concerned as to what conduct is expected of them – and in particular, what is meant by conflict of interest. The ethical principles in their current form – as well as some of the pertinent legal provisions – are too general to provide clear guidance in specific situations. GRECO therefore recommends that the existing legal and ethical standards be further developed and refined, that specific training activities on these standards be provided and that members of parliament, judges and prosecutors are provided with confidential counselling on possible conflicts of interest and related matters. GRECO expects that further progress in this area will help strengthen the trust the public have in members of parliament and the judiciary, which still appears to be wanting despite a positive trend noted in recent years.
The implementation of the 16 recommendations addressed to Poland will be assessed by GRECO in the second half of 2014 through its compliance procedure.