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Anne Kalmari
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Puhe Euroopan neuvoston yleiskokouksessa

Honoured chairman  of the assembly and fellow representatives

Freely democratic institutions, their trustworthy functioning and the accountability are key factors in a state or organization that wishes to be recognized democratic. In this assembly we often hear, how rule of law, democracy and human rights are our guidelines, and yet we have not properly and honestly looked into the mirror. It is about a time, that accountability and trustworthiness will be taken seriously in the Council of Europe and all it’s operating bodies!

Corruption, disqualification, conflict of interest issues or other severe violations of elected officials must be taken seriously and not brushed away. It is clear, that the openness and zero tolerance to corruption should be the ground rule for all democratically elected position holders. This, however, should be written down – not just assumed – and therefore I warmly support the rapporteur Ms Maury Pasquier’s report to make the suggested amendments to Rules of Procedure to ensure consequences for lack of trust or inappropriate behavior.

In addition I would like to remind, that prevention and monitoring are key factors supporting equal standards for everyone involved. In Finland we have a clear system of reporting all financial support that is offered and given to us.  This also includes benefits without monetary exchange. The open reporting system reminds everyone involved, that opinions and decisions cannot be bought in a democratic state or institution.

We all as democratically elected representatives, must take this matter seriously. We must ensure, that if the trust of an elected official is lost, there must be serious consequences to ensure that the position is at stake. Prevention as well as implications of condemned deeds are much needed.

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