House president Demetris Syllouris on Monday presented the draft of the MPs’ code of conduct arguing it is yet another tool reinforcing institutions and democracy in terms of transparency and avoiding conflict of interest.
The code of conduct was the initiative of the House ethics committee and prepared in cooperation with the University of Cyprus. The recommendations by the Council of Europe’s anti-corruption monitoring body, Greco, have also been taken into consideration.
The code of conduct was sent to all deputies and political parties. After the committee prepares a comprehensive proposal based on the draft, the code of conduct will be tabled to the House plenum to vote.
“I believe that, with this material, the committee will be able within a very short period of time to come to a decision which will be passed by the House plenum,” Syllouris said, adding it should be feasible within one to two months.
Its implementation, he said, adds yet another tool to strengthen institutions and democracy.
“The goal is not to restrict MPs but to reinforce their work and mission, removing the constant risk of selectively invoking principles,” he said.
The overall proposal, he said, is based on a mixed system of principles and rules of ethics, conduct and transparency, covering a wide range of issues relating to the duties and performance of deputies and their overall presence and behaviour in society.
The code says that MPs should always act based on the general principles of ethics and transparency and act with selflessness, integrity, objectivity, transparency, honesty, responsibility and determination. They should also be ready to fully disclose any of their assets, whether movable or immovable, as well as any activity, property or relationship from which they or persons linked with them, will or expect to benefit.
Syllouris said that the code of conduct in question could be a good basis for other such codes for other institutions such as journalists and the media.