BELGRADE – It is crucial that substantial changes happen based on the implementation of the Action Plan for Chapter 23, and not only to “check off” items.
At the public discussion organized by the Belgrade Center for Security Policy (BCSP) on March 29, BCSP researcher Vladimir Erceg presented the segment of the Alternative Report on Corruption relating to the Police. Out of ten activities, only one has been fully realized, while one is being implemented continuously, Erceg explained.
“The measures envisioned by the Action Plan do not cover all aspects of police work that need to be improved in order to establish prevention of corruption. Instead of technical and procedural measures, the AP benchmarks should describe the actual qualitative changes that application of the AP will contribute to. However, even the realization of the existing measures would bring significant results”, Erceg emphasized.
Erceg pointed out a big delay in adopting sublegal acts that should regulate the Internal Control Department of the police and a weakening of its capacities, a lack of coordination of anti-corruption measures within the police and a high perception of corruption among citizens as the biggest failures.
BCSP research from 2017 showed that perception of corruption remains high. Only one in 25 citizens of Serbia believe that there is no corruption in the police, while 68% think that the police are extremely corrupt.
In 2018, special attention should be paid to the process of amending the Law on Police, as well as the adoption of the promised sublegal acts and the adoption of a new act on the systematization of jobs by the Ministry of Interior, as the reform effect of this important ministry will largely depend on these processes, concluded BCSP researcher Vladimir Erceg.
The public discussion is part of the project “An Alternative View of Chapter 23 – Changes in the Legal Framework and Practice” implemented by the BCSP. The project is financed from the budget of the Republic of Serbia, based on a competition conducted by the Anti-Corruption Agency. The views and opinions expressed belong to the authors and do not necessarily represent the views of the Anti-Corruption Agency.