NEWS IN SHORT

Watchdog grades government poorly

TRANSPARENCY International Slovakia (TIS) has presented its evaluation of Robert Fico’s government in the area of fighting corruption and has given it an overall grade of 4.3, on a scale ranging from 1 (optimum) to 5 (failure).

TRANSPARENCY International Slovakia (TIS) has presented its evaluation of Robert Fico’s government in the area of fighting corruption and has given it an overall grade of 4.3, on a scale ranging from 1 (optimum) to 5 (failure).

Fico’s government in its three years in office is seen by TIS as “supporting an atmosphere of tolerating corruption”, since systemic steps to combat corruption are absent and “the government still hasn’t continued the activities of implementing the anti-corruption programme of the previous government and did not pass any serious anti-corruption measures”, TIS wrote.

TIS criticised the fact that the government and other state administration bodies have not focused on fighting corruption, though the report did list some positive steps such as the amendment of the public procurement act and the duty of municipalities to report their public-private partnership (PPP) projects to the Finance Ministry.

On the other hand, coalition MPs' successful campaign to have Slovakia’s Special Court, which handled cases involving corruption and organised crime, ruled unconstitutional and the law on science and research stimuli were among measures with a negative impact on fighting corruption. TIS also criticised the state administration’s refusal to provide information to the public as required by law, disciplinary actions against some judges, and the prime minister's repeated attacks on the media and private health insurers. TIS produced its report in cooperation with 20 experts on public sector issues.

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