RA Prime Minister: Corruption Is Greatest Evil On Road Of Building A


Noyan Tapan
Dec 11, 2009

YEREVAN, DECEMBER 11, NOYAN TAPAN. Corruption is the greatest evil on
the road of building a strong state, Armenian Prime Minister Tigran
Sargsyan stated at the December 9 forum dedicated to International
Anti-Corruption Day.

In his words, there is no general recipe for fighting corruption:
every state chooses its method. He said that the RA government’s
anti-corruption strategy program envisages three directions of
combating corruption. The first one is to show a personal example
and not to tolerate corruption among high-ranking officials, and
the best mechanism here is transparency of their work. For this
purpose a bill envisaging creation of an open electronic register with
information about work of 500 high-ranking officials and their personal
declarations has been submitted to the National Assembly. The prime
minister underlined the importance of fulfilling the Constitution’s
requirement that NA deputies and ministers have no right to carry on
business. "We intend to introduce legislative mechanisms," T. Sargsyan
said. He attached importance to the implementation of institutional
reforms, in particular, to the introduction of new mechanisms of
financing in order reduce the corruption risks.

The second direction of the fight against corruption presupposes
"serious changes" in public mood concerning corruption. The prime
minister noted that the society "does not fight aggressively" against
corruption, which is a worrying fact. At the same time, according to
him, the NGOs to deal with corruption are politicizing the problem.

In his speech, RA Prosecutor General Aghvan Hovsepian said there has
been progress in the fight against corruption in Armenia: 69 cases in
connection with corruption-related crimes were opened in 2007, 390
cases in 2008, and 309 cases in the first nine months of 2009. "We
have achieved this progress by joint efforts of the law enforcement
bodies and thanks to strengthening the society’s trust and its active
participation," the prosecutor general declared.

The forum was organized by the USAID Mobilizing Action Againt
Corruption (MAAC) Activity, the OSCE Yerevan Office, and the RA
Prosecutor General’s Office.