Update On Anti-Corruption Enforcement In Ireland

Author:Ms Carina Lawlor, Bríd Munnelly and Michael Byrne

Council of Europe

The Group of States against Corruption ("GRECO"), a body established by the Council of Europe, published its fourth evaluation report on corruption prevention in Ireland on 21 November 2014. GRECO's objective is "to improve the capacity of its members to fight corruption by monitoring their compliance with Council of Europe anti-corruption standards through a dynamic process of mutual evaluation and peer pressure". Previous GRECO reports on corruption prevention in Ireland have addressed issues of bribery and the funding of political parties.

While GRECO praised the transparency of the Irish legislative process and the independence of the judiciary and prosecution service, it highlighted a growing concern regarding corruption in Ireland. GRECO has, therefore, made a number of recommendations to safeguard the independence of such functions, as follows:

The current structure for ethical standards and conduct of members of parliament is viewed as complex and is currently spread across various statutes, guidelines and codes of conduct. The GRECO report recommends a consolidated values-based framework to regulate the conduct of members of parliament in addition to broader obligations for asset declarations. In relation to the judiciary, GRECO recommends the reform of the current system for the appointment and promotion of judges, the establishment of a statutory judicial council, and a code of ethical conduct linked to an accountability mechanism. GRECO also recommends greater transparency and an enhanced organisational structure to receive and handle complaints in relation to the integrity and ethical conduct of the DPP and the Gardaí in their role as public prosecutors. Transparency International

On 23 October 2014, Transparency International launched its tenth annual enforcement...

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