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Cyprus

House to vote on transparency bill for public servants

Chairman of the House Legal Affairs Committee Sotiris Sampson

By Evie Andreou

THE bill amendment aiming to shed light on the sources of income of state officials and high ranking civil servants that handle public wealth is to be voted before the parliament’s summer recess, the head of the House Legal affairs committee Soteris Sampson said on Wednesday.

The committee members are about to start drafting the list of state officials and high ranking civil servants.

At present, discussion is focused on the eighth constitutional amendment and on legislation concerning disclosure of financial statements, which have been ruled as anti-constitutional by the Supreme Court, Sampson said, and the aim “is to lift the recorded unconstitutionality”.

The committee’s task is to make sure that the possibility of the new laws being considered as unconstitutional again is reduced to the minimum or  completely eliminated, by taking into consideration the need for institutionalisation and regulation of the  disclosure of financial statements for purposes of transparency and for combating vested interests.

“The discussion is continuing so that the committee can reach a mutually acceptable framework within the context of trends in other EU countries,” Sampson said.

He added that the discussion will continue in 15 days and that they have also asked the House Ethics Committee to jointly examine issues that also fall under their remit.

Concerning the name-and-shame practice, Sampson said that the committee is looking into how to avoid “coffeeshop gossip” and serve its purpose and publicise the names of those who don’t abide by the new law.

He also said that the committee is also about to conclude discussion on which civil servants are also entitled to hold party posts.

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