MPs have until the end of July to conform to the new law on capital-statement submission, which calls on them to reveal not only their own assets and liabilities but also those of their spouse and children, it emerged on Wednesday.
In a letter to deputies, dated June 28 and made public by daily Politis, House secretary-general Vassiliki Anastasiadou informed them that the new law affords no transition periods, and thus they are obliged to submit the added information within a “reasonable period”.
The parliamentary committee on disclosure rules, chaired by House speaker Demetris Syllouris, decided that a reasonable period for deputies to disclose all relevant information is one month from receipt of the letter.
The law, voted in April 2016, was referred by President Nicos Anastasiades to the Supreme Court over a clause that obliged parliament to make the filings of both officials and their spouses and relatives public. The president, the cabinet and MEPs are also bound by the terms of the law.
The top judicial body ruled that the law was partially unconstitutional, with the contentious clause struck down, but the confidential submission of the capital statements of officials’ spouses and children remaining in force.
According to the law, submissions will be made to the House disclosures committee but only officials’ capital statements will be posted on the parliament’s website.
Home addresses and car registration plates will be redacted from the public records.
The names of officials who failed to submit a statement will also be made public.
Citing Anastasiadou, Politis reported that all deputies have met their obligation to file their own disclosure forms, under the provisions of the old law, but not everyone had conformed with the new regime on spousal and children statements.
The House disclosures committee may investigate the contents of any disclosure form submitted if it is presented with a claim under oath that the official who filed it has any additional asset, which the claimant has a reasonable suspicion was not included in the statement.
Thus far, the committee has never received a claim that would trigger such an investigation, Anastasiadou said.