The third round of measuring the percentage of fulfillment of the indicators of openness, accountability and transparency of governments and state institutions of six regional countries, conducted within the ACTION SEE – Accountability, Technology and Institutional Openness Network in SEE project, implemented by the Metamorphosis Foundation for Internet and Society in partnership with regional NGOs, has begun.
To measure the level of institutional openness, in compliance with the international standards, recommendations and good practice examples, the ministries, executive agencies and institutions, Parliament, local self-government and judiciary are assessed using special quantitative and qualitative indicators such as: access to information available at institutions’ official websites, legal framework’s quality in individual cases, other sources of public informing, published data regarding the work of institutions, public procurements, information on spending of public money, etc.
Pursuant to last year’s measuring, the Roadmap on Good Governance was prepared which, apart from the main recommendations on the openness of certain institutions, emphasizes the following steps for improving the state of affairs:
To fulfill the indicators of preventing conflict of interests, the ministries should upload the asset declarations of functionaries on their websites as well as link to the State Commission for Prevention of Corruption, where the said asset declarations are uploaded pursuant to law.
Other executive bodies should publish the annual budget as well as the semi-annual report on the budget spending in order to improve the budget transparency, which stands at 13%.
Click here to read more about the institutions.
The Parliament of the Republic of Macedonia should work on improving the openness of the working bodies (committees) by publishing attendance lists, shorthand and video records as well as vote scores. Past practice has shown that only conclusions and proposed amendments are published, while video records (broadcasted after several days and without information about the exact time of broadcasting) are not uploaded on Parliament’s website, although aired on the national Parliament TV Channel.
Click here to read more about the Parliament.
Courts have demonstrated a score of 42% under the principle of integrity, which is a significant downfall compared to 2016 when the score was 65%. This principle encompasses mechanisms for prevention of corruption, application of codes of ethics and regulation of lobbying. Although introduced many years ago, Codes of Ethics on ethics of judges as of 2006 and 2014 and prosecutors as of 2004 and 2014, there is insufficient evidence for compliance with them.
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Only a third of the municipalities publishes the semi-annual reports on budget execution, which offer the citizens precise information on the revenues and expenditures during the year. All of this contributes to municipalities’ humble fulfillment of the index of transparency, budget transparency subcategory, which stands at 37%.
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The project aims to increase the inclusion of civic society and media organizations in decision making processes and the creation of public opinion and policies, as well as to raise the capacity of civic societies to address sensitive issues.
The ACTION SEE – Accountability, Technology and Institutional Openness Network in South East Europe project is funded by the European Union and is implemented by the Metamorphosis Foundation, Westminster Foundation for Democracy, CRTA – Center for Research, Transparency and Accountability, Citizens Association Why not?, Center for Democratic Transition, Open Data Kosovo (ODK) and Levizja Mjaft!
The views expressed in these papers are the sole responsibility of the authors and researchers.