Brussels Urges Bulgaria to Protect Anti-Graft Institutions from Political Influence

Brussels Urges Bulgaria to Protect Anti-Graft Institutions from Political Influence

Bulgaria should shield anti-corruption institutions from political influence and appoint their management in a transparent way, the European Commission said.
"Fighting corruption has long been a priority for Bulgaria, and legal reforms have resulted in the establishment of new structures. However, corruption remains widespread," the Commission said in a press release upon the issue of its latest European Anti-Corruption Report.

The Commission noted that random assignment of cases in courts should be ensured by an effective nationwide system, and suggested the adoption of a code of ethics for members of parliament, and the enforcement of dissuasive sanctions for corruption in public procurement at national and local level.

Alongside an analysis of the situation in each EU member state, the report contains two extensive opinion polls. More than three quarters of European citizens, and 84% or Bulgarians, agree that corruption is widespread in their home country. Some 4.0% of Europeans, and 11% of Bulgarians, say that they have been asked or expected to pay a bribe in the past year. And only 9.0% of Bulgarians - the lowest percentage in the EU - consider that there are sufficient prosecutions to deter people from corrupt practices.

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