Council of Europe points out Slovakia's weaknesses in corruption prevention

The police and government are recommended to take several steps.

Council of Europe's GRECO has published a report on Slovakia, suggesting the steps how to improve the country's fight against corruption. Council of Europe's GRECO has published a report on Slovakia, suggesting the steps how to improve the country's fight against corruption. (Source: SITA)

Slovakia should adopt several steps in order to be more efficient in eliminating corruption. This stems from the recent evaluation report issued by the Council of Europe's anti-corruption group (GRECO).

It suggests that a number of steps should be applied urgently when it comes to top posts in government, as well as the work of police forces.

“Decisive steps must also be taken to ensure that the protection of whistleblowers from within the police becomes really effective in practice,” the report reads.

Read alsoThe perception of corruption in Slovakia has been the worst since 2013 Read more 

The findings were put together on the basis of the mass protests in Slovakia after the murders of the investigative journalist Ján Kuciak and his fiancée Martina Kušnírová in 2018. People have demanded more transparency in investigation, the accountability of politicians, and rooting out corruption.

Action plan & transparency

GRECO recommends the Slovak government, for example, to adopt an action plan that would contain the list of corruption risks related to the government's work.

“This should go hand in hand with laying down clear integrity standards and rules for ministers, state secretaries, political advisers and senior officials, in the form of an enforceable, well-publicised code of conduct,” the report reads.

The anti-corruption group has stressed the need for increased transparency regarding top positions within the government to enhance accountability towards the citizens. Politicians should, therefore, publish their links to lobbyists and made all received gifts public.

“More detailed information should be made available to the public concerning asset and interest declarations,” the report reads.

Prevention in the police

Read alsoIs Slovakia still in the bosom of corruption? Read more 

GRECO looked into corruption within police forces, calling for more stringent rules and prevention measures.

The report considers the adoption of an operational action plan and revision of the existing Code of Ethics for the Police Force as starting points for a change in the police.

In addition to principles, the code should provide police officers with a manual covering real-life examples of how the police should approach different situations.

“Stronger security vetting of police members not only upon recruitment but also crucially throughout their career” is another recommendation mentioned in the report, alongside more transparency regarding the investigation of police misconduct.

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