Government appoints Committee to oversee GRECO anti-corruption recommendations
08:20 - 12 October 2023
The Cabinet has approved the establishment of a Committee under the supervision of the Deputy Minister to the President, to thoroughly examine and follow the course of the implementation of the Group of States against Corruption (GRECO) recommendations regarding the government.
The news was conveyed by Deputy Government Spokesman Yiannis Antoniou in statements to the media after the 11 October meeting of the Council of Ministers that convened under President, Nikos Christodoulides.
Antoniou also said that the Cabinet authorised the Minister of Justice and Public Order to follow, in cooperation with the Police Chief, the implementation of the recommendations of GRECO related to the law enforcement agencies and take all necessary actions to this end for the best possible compliance, informing the Council of Ministers about the progress of their implementation. Moreover, he announced that the Cabinet has also approved the establishment of a Code of Conduct for the government's members.
In his statements, Antoniou noted that the Cabinet approved the establishment of the Committee that will thoroughly examine and follow the implementation of GRECO's suggestions regarding the government, that is the top executive functions, which have been outlined in the framework of the fifth evaluation round about the prevention of corruption and the promotion of integrity in central governments and law enforcement agencies.
The Deputy Government Spokesman said that this Committee will work in cooperation with all services involved in the implementation of the recommendations and will regularly inform the Council of Ministers about the progress of their implementation. When this is required it will be able to suggest to the Cabinet any necessary actions for the timely and best possible compliance with these recommendations.
According to Antoniou, the Cabinet approved the composition of the Committee that will comprise the Head of the Cypriot Delegation in GRECO, a representative of the Presidency who will be recommended by the Deputy Minister to the President, a representative of the Justice and Public Order Ministry who will be recommended by the competent Minister, a representative of the Authority against Corruption, through the Commissioner for Transparency, and a representative of the Foreign Ministry.
The Deputy Government Spokesman also noted that the Cabinet adopted the establishment of a Code of Conduct for the members of the government, noting that the Treasury of the Republic, the Permanent Secretaries of the Ministries and Deputy Ministries, and the Head of the Presidency Administration will be informed about their own actions as regards the provisions of the Code regarding the procedure for the acceptance of gifts by the members of the government.
He went on to say that the Code of Conduct was drafted by the Law Commissioner after instructions from the President of the Republic and that the suggestions and views of the Cypriot Delegation in GRECO were taken into consideration.
Antoniou said that the new Code of Conduct replaces the previous Charter of Conduct, noting that the Code provides for guiding lines to the members of the government, determines the "conflict of interest" for the member of the government or the individual who is "connected" with the member, regulates the acceptance of gifts and of hosting members of the government, introduces a system of sufficient monitoring and compliance with the provisions of the Code with the ability to take measures in case of a violation and depending on how serious this is it provides for the appointment of an independent Conduct Adviser who will advise the President and the members of the government.
"We believe that the Code is an important step towards good administration, while if there is a need to revise it, given that this comes up through its empirical implementation it will be evaluated accordingly with a view to secure its further evolution and effectiveness," he added.