Back Council of Europe’s anti-corruption body on Slovenia: balanced gender representation in the government welcomed, addressing conflicts of interest must start at the top

Council of Europe’s anti-corruption body on Slovenia: balanced gender representation in the government welcomed, addressing conflicts of interest must start at the top

Slovenia is the first country to have been issued a report on under the new monitoring round carried out by the Council of Europe’s anti-corruption body GRECO. The report published today focuses on preventing corruption and promoting integrity in central governments (top executive functions) and law enforcement agencies; it calls for proactive prevention of conflicts of interest, greater transparency and more resources to the national anti-corruption body.

Among the positive developments noted in the report is the balanced gender representation in the Slovenian government, with eight ministers being male and eight female.

I am very glad that GRECO is publishing this report on the International Women’s Day”, said GRECO President, Marin Mrčela. “We are convinced that gender issues matter in effectively tackling corruption, and have been giving special attention to them in this evaluation round. I want to pay tribute to the Slovenian government for having achieved gender parity in its composition, and call upon all GRECO members to follow the Slovenian example. #PressforProgress!

In the police, however, the percentage of women is still to be made proportionate to the composition of the population. GRECO called upon the Slovenian authorities to pay particular attention to the recruitment and integration of women at all levels of the police, not only at lower or support posts.

This is GRECO’s first ever gender-based Recommendation, and we look forward to its swift implementation by the Slovenian authorities. It clearly shows that progress towards gender parity is well on GRECO’s map”, Mrčela concluded.

On a more general note, GRECO welcomed Slovenia’s well-developed anti-corruption legal framework and its comprehensive public information access policy and the fact that ministers do not enjoy immunity in criminal and administrative proceedings. It remained concerned, however, about the wide gap between the legislation and its implementation in practice, and about the fact that assets declarations of top officials are neither published nor properly scrutinized.

GRECO calls on the government to be more proactive in preventing and managing conflicts of interest involving ministers and cabinet members, including through ensuring timely publication of their asset declarations, considering widening their scope to include spouses and dependent family members, and in-depth check of these declarations. GRECO supports the government’s plans to address the shortcomings identified in the Integrity and Prevention of Corruption Act, notably as regards transparency of lobbying. More effective implementation of the Act needs to be secured, in particular by giving to the Commission for the Prevention of Corruption a better legal basis to be able to check the assets of Ministers’ family members when it suspects illicit enrichment.

GRECO praised the police for the steps taken over the years to prevent corruption within its ranks, the efforts which have led to the increased level of public trust. To reinforce its individual and organisational integrity, the police now has in place a comprehensive anticorruption infrastructure, operational internal checks and a public complaints system. Further efforts are underway to continue building trust with civil society through community police projects, as well as to manage and resolve conflicts in service. GRECO encourages the police to continue leading by example and calls for additional improvements regarding the refinement of risk management tools, the control of secondary employment and the protection of whistleblowers.

The implementation of the recommendations addressed to Slovenia will be assessed by GRECO in 2019 through its compliance procedure.

Other languages available:

* unofficial translation, as provided by the authorities of Slovenia

Strasbourg 08/03/2018
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