Countering corruption in an organization
Corruption offenses are becoming more common. Today corruption in Russia and other European countries is already a traditional type of crime. Moreover, our country is one of the most corrupt in the world. And the spread of corruption is the main reason for the decline in the economy of an individual organization and the system of public administration, the failure of reforms and a decline in the consciousness of citizens.
Corruption is a complex phenomenon that affects the entire society, therefore it is incorrect to limit oneself to one definition of the concept. But most often corruption is explained as the use by an official of his own powers and rights to obtain illegal material gain. For which the law provides for administrative or criminal liability.
Types of corruption
Depending on the field of activity, the following types of corruption are distinguished:
- abuse of power by government officials;
- selfish use of official rights by employees of organizations;
- legislative (parliamentary) corruption.
Corruption of civil servants
Civil servants abuse their powers, using the right to dispose of state resources and the ability to make decisions at the state level. Such decisions are not always made in the interests of the country and citizens: often officials act for the purpose of personal enrichment.
Depending on the position of an employee in a state organization, there are higher and lower types of corruption. In the first case, officials of the “highest echelon” are responsible for corruption: they make “expensive” decisions - laws, government orders, change of ownership. And in the second, there are middle and lower-level civil servants who interact with citizens on a daily basis: they issue fines or registrations.
Within the framework of one state organization, the direct bribe-taker and his boss may be involved in “vertical” corruption. Usually the latter covers the criminal for personal reward. Such a scheme links the corrupt officials of the “upper” and “lower” echelons. This type of corruption is the most dangerous, because it means the transition of isolated acts of corruption into an organized form.
Corruption in organizations
Employees of a commercial or public organization also have power resources. Abuse of official authority provides an opportunity to gain personal gain, violating the interests of your organization.
A vivid example of corruption in Russian organizations is loan agreements for project implementation, drawn up for a bribe in small commercial banks. The only purpose of these deals is to get money.
A kind of parliamentary corruption is vote-buying during the election campaign. In such a situation, the voter is the bearer of "powers of authority" regulated by the Constitution of the Russian Federation. And he delegates his rights to the elect through voting. According to the law, the voter decides to transfer his power to a worthy candidate who will honestly represent his interests.
When a voter is bribed, an unauthorized agreement is drawn up between him and the candidate. In accordance with a corrupt deal, the voter, contrary to the constitutional norm, receives a monetary reward, and the candidate, bypassing the legislation, acquires power. This is the most frequent manifestation of political (parliamentary) corruption.
When corruption is good
Some sociologists consider manifestations of corruption to be an integral part of the development of states with unstable economies. They argue that this type of fraud not only does not harm, but also stimulates the development of the market. In their opinion, corruption schemes compensate for gaps in legislation and public administration due to:
- unprofessional performance of their powers by officials of all ranks;
- lack of initiative of civil servants;
- the lack of effective mechanisms for the implementation of legislative norms that allow officials to independently interpret them;
- a low level of legal awareness and economic literacy of citizens, who find it easier to bribe employees, and not to study the intricacies of the implementation of bureaucratic procedures.
They provoke corruption and high tax rates, which bribes can get rid of for commercial organizations. Corruption schemes are especially popular in new organizations at the stage of formation.
But even corruption-minded researchers acknowledge its short-term effects. Corruption damages the long-term prospects for the development of the economy, society and the state, since commercial organizations remain defenseless against the lawlessness of unscrupulous civil servants. And the most effective ways of protection are to reduce tax rates, increase the pay of civil servants, eliminate direct contact between officials and taxpayer organizations and limit arbitrary decisions, etc.
Fight against bribes
The scope of anti-corruption measures today is impressive. Especially in comparison with the anti-corruption struggle ten years ago, when such an influence on private organizations was impossible.
Ten years ago, the very word “corruption” was banned in the World Bank. And now this organization is the leader of the global anti-corruption struggle.
Another founder of the anti-corruption movement is the World Organization for Economic Cooperation and Development. It was she who initiated the adoption in 1999 of the Convention on the Fight against Bribes to Officials of Certain Countries during the Conclusion of International Business Agreements.
This Convention gives a clear definition of corruption and bribery, regulates the rules for the implementation of anti-corruption legislative norms, and establishes mechanisms for international legal assistance.
The third organization that develops international anti-corruption standards is Transparency International. It is a non-profit non-governmental organization that unites 80 states. Its branches are open all over the world.
Organization of preventive anti-corruption measures
To ensure the smooth operation of organizations - institutions of different forms of ownership - it is necessary to develop and implement the rules and measures to combat corruption:
- anti-corruption policy;
- the procedure for identifying and registering the facts of corruption and its provocation;
- a comprehensive plan of measures to combat corruption in the organization for the year.
The decree of the President of the Russian Federation on the approval of the national strategy and national plan in Russia provides for the development and implementation of plans and programs for combating corruption in government bodies (ministries, local administrations), as well as in regional municipal organizations. Such plans are created and approved in all budgetary organizations: educational institutions (kindergartens, general education schools, vocational schools, technical schools, universities); law enforcement agencies (police, prosecutors); courts. For this, meetings of special anti-corruption committees are held, reports on anti-corruption work are filled out.
Sample Anti-Corruption Plan and how to write it
The anti-corruption action plan is approved by the head of the organization by drawing up an order. The original of the Plan is filed together with the order of the director of the organization. Changes can be made after its approval by issuing a new order "On amendments". An Anti-Corruption Plan for 1-3 years is being drawn up.
After the approval of the name of the document and the main graphs, a table is drawn up containing five columns:
- event number;
- name of measures;
- the employee responsible for implementation;
- note (note on the fulfillment of the plan item).
The following are listed as anti-corruption measures:
- formation of legal awareness among employees of the organization and a negative attitude towards corruption;
- informing all employees of the organization of the facts of committing corruption acts;
- creating a negative attitude among the employees of the organization towards accepting gifts for the performance of their official functions;
- intensification of work on the part of employees of the organization to prevent behavior that may be perceived by clients as provocation, coercion or a promise to give a bribe;
- obligatory official investigations on allegations of provocation of the organization's employees to receive bribes or commit other corrupt acts;
- transfer of materials of internal verification to law enforcement agencies or the prosecutor's office;
- creation and activation of the work of a "hot line" for the filing of applications by citizens on the facts of corruption by employees of the organization;
- monitoring applications from citizens or companies about the facts of provocation or receiving bribes by employees of a state (municipal) organization or the lack of results of consideration of such applications;
- creation of optimal conditions for the provision of services to the organization's clients - the “one-stop shop” principle;
- professional development of employees of the organization, conducting personal consultations, participation of employees in seminars, training in the organization itself or with the participation of invited specialists;
- explaining to new employees the anti-corruption laws and local regulations of the organization;
- monitoring and analysis of the implementation of internal procedures;
- monitoring accounting information of the organization and checking the accuracy of documentation;
- cooperation with law enforcement agencies, prosecutor's office, other state and budget organizations;
- obtaining and summarizing information from the media regarding the factors of corruption acts;
- formation and transmission of a report to a higher state or budgetary organization on the detection of corruption facts committed by employees of the organization, as well as on the measures taken to eliminate them;
- periodically summarizing and sending in the form of a report to a higher organization of information on the work done to combat corruption, analysis of its effectiveness and proposals for improvement;
- monitoring of the anti-corruption policy carried out in the organization and its revision (in case of insufficient efficiency).
At the end of the document, the position and name of the employee responsible for combating corruption are indicated.
Indicative list of preventive anti-corruption measures
An indicative list of anti-corruption measures in federal or budgetary organizations is enshrined in the Methodological Recommendations of the Ministry of Labor of the Russian Federation. In accordance with these recommendations, all anti-corruption measures can be subdivided into blocks depending on their goals.
Legal and regulatory framework for standards and principles of anti-corruption behavior of employees of the organization:
- Creation and approval of the Code of Ethics and rules of conduct for employees of the organization.
- Creation and familiarization of the organization's employees with the concept of a conflict of interest and its declaration.
- Creation, discussion and approval of uniform rules for the organization on the delivery and acceptance of business presentations and signs of economic hospitality.
- Implementation by the organization of the anti-corruption business charter in the Russian Federation.
- Introduction of a standard clause prohibiting bribery in the organization's internal documents.
- Inclusion of a clause on the prevention of corruption acts in labor contracts with employees of the organization.
Creation and implementation of anti-corruption mechanisms:
- Creation of a special procedure for notifying employees of the organization to their management about the facts of provocation of corruption, the procedure for investigating such messages, the formation of public communication channels for sending such statements.
- Preparation and implementation of schemes for informing the heads of the organization about the facts of unlawful behavior of other employees, employees of partner companies or clients, the procedure for investigating these appeals, the formation of mechanisms for easy communication (feedback, "hot line").
- Formation of a scheme for reporting to the management of the organization about the appearance of a conflict of interest and the procedure for resolving such a conflict
- Creation of a mechanism to protect employees who have informed the management about the facts of corruption crimes in the organization from harassment (statutory and extra-statutory) from other employees.
- The introduction of a mandatory annual declaration of a conflict of interest by all employees of the organization.
- Periodic monitoring and assessment of corruption risks to identify the area of activity of the organization and the implementation of the prescribed anti-corruption measures.
Professional development and awareness of the organization's personnel:
- Informing employees, under signature, about innovations in the anti-corruption legislation (once a year).
- The passage of training courses by employees of the organization in order to prevent and combat corruption (periodically).
- Implementation of personal consultations with the staff of the organization to increase the level of legal awareness and prevent corruption.
Formation of the program of own (within the enterprise) monitoring and audit in accordance with the anti-corruption policy of the budgetary organization:
- Systematic supervision over the implementation of internal anti-corruption measures.
- Periodic monitoring and audit of the organization's accounting documentation, the availability of the necessary reports, their reliability.
- Systematic monitoring of the justification for spending with an increased risk of crime in this area - business gifts, charity, payment for the services of external consultants, entertainment expenses.
Engaging independent auditors:
- Systematic external audit.
- Involvement of independent consultants in planning and implementing anti-corruption procedures and conducting business activities of the organization.
Analysis of the effectiveness of anti-corruption measures and preparation of reports on the work done:
- Periodic analysis and assessment of the effectiveness of anti-corruption work in the organization.
- Compilation and publication of reports on the work carried out in the field of combating corruption.
When adopting and agreeing on a policy for the prevention of offenses, the Action Plan for combating corruption is additionally approved. For all programs provided by the Plan, deadlines and responsible personnel are determined.
The methodological recommendations of the Ministry of Labor and Social Protection of the Russian Federation decipher the basic definitions and terms in accordance with the changes in anti-corruption legislation. The department also determines responsibility for committing corruption offenses, the principles of anti-corruption policy in state and budgetary organizations, legal support for its implementation, mechanisms for introducing measures to counter bribery.
Official responsible for the prevention of corruption offenses
An employee responsible for preventing and combating corruption is appointed by order of the head of the organization or structural department or his deputy. The functional responsibilities of the employee responsible for anti-corruption activities are clearly defined. They are recorded in the organization's anti-corruption policy and the employee's job description.
An indicative list of functional responsibilities of the responsible employee is given in the second paragraph of the fourth section of the Methodological Recommendations of the Ministry of Labor of the Russian Federation.
Cooperation with law enforcement
Cooperation of state organizations with representatives of the police, prosecutor's office and the court on combating corruption is regulated by the ninth paragraph of the fourth section of the Methodological Recommendations of the Ministry of Labor.
Formation and implementation in practice of standards and measures aimed at preventing corruption
To implement the principles and standards aimed at combating corruption, the following are formed and approved:
- anti-corruption policy of the organization;
- plan for the implementation of measures to prevent corruption offenses;
- the procedure for reporting the facts of persuading employees of the organization to receive a bribe.
Code of Conduct
The code of ethics for official conduct is approved by each state organization. The prototype is the Code of Ethics and Service Conduct of Employees of Management Bodies, Social Protection of the Population and Social Service Institutions, enacted by Order of the Ministry of Labor and Social Protection No. 792 dated 31.12.2013.
Upon hiring, new employees are introduced to the Code of Ethics under their signature. Also, all employees must have free access to the document, for which it is placed on the organization's information stand.
Conflict of interest and ways to resolve it
Timely detection of conflicts of interest in the work of the organization's employees is one of the key tasks in the prevention of corruption crimes. Methodological recommendations of the Ministry of Labor of the Russian Federation (Appendix # 3) identify several forms of conflict of interest. Therefore, the organization develops a reminder of typical situations that increase the risk of such a conflict, based on the characteristics of the services provided by the organization, and also prescribes the procedure for its settlement.
Conflict of Interest Statement is a local document governing the procedure for identifying and resolving this conflict that arises among employees of an organization during the performance of official duties. Such a document includes:
- decoding of terms used in the text;
- list of employees and other persons to whom the Regulation applies;
- principles for resolving conflicts of interest in an organization;
- the procedure for identifying conflict situations and methods of their settlement;
- responsibilities of responsible persons in identifying, disclosing and resolving conflicts of interest;
- responsibility of the organization's employees for non-compliance with the Conflict of Interest Statement.
Detailed recommendations on the creation of a Conflict of Interest Regulations for state and budgetary organizations are contained in the fourth paragraph of the fourth section of the Methodological Recommendations of the Ministry of Labor of the Russian Federation.
In accordance with the adopted Regulation, a commission is created in the organization to resolve the conflict of interest. The commission consists of a chairman, his deputy, a secretary and ordinary members. Independent experts from among public figures, trade union leaders, members of scientific and educational organizations are invited to the meetings of the commission.
The position prescribes:
- tasks of the commission for the settlement of conflicts of interest;
- reasons for holding meetings;
- the procedure for creating a commission;
- rules for informing the commission about the facts of conflict of interest;
- the procedure for making decisions by the commission.
Preventing false reporting and using fake documentation
Internal monitoring, analysis and audit are carried out to prevent the preparation of false documentation and reporting. The tasks of internal control and assessment of organizations' reporting are given in the seventh paragraph of the fourth section of the Methodological Recommendations of the Ministry of Labor and Social Protection of the Russian Federation.
All employees responsible for reporting are familiarized with the legal framework for the prevention and counteraction of corruption offenses. All personnel have free access to the certificates.
To increase the efficiency of work on the prevention and disclosure of corruption offenses, measures are carried out strictly according to the regulations. Responsibilities for the prevention and detection of corruption facts are established common for all employees of the organization or special - for certain categories of officials.
The general duties of employees in anti-corruption activities include:
- Prevention of committing or participating in offenses (including harboring) on behalf of or in the interests of organizations.
- Refusal of conduct that can be interpreted as consent to commit corruption offenses or participate in them.
- Timely notification of the management or an employee responsible for the implementation of anti-corruption policy of the facts of coercion of employees of the organization to participate in corruption schemes.
- Immediate reporting to the head of the institution or an employee conducting anti-corruption policy about the facts of corruption by employees, counterparties or clients.
- Identifying and informing management and other responsible employees about a conflict of interest in the organization.
Special duties for the prevention and prevention of corruption are established:
- for heads of budgetary organizations;
- employees whose job responsibilities include the implementation of anti-corruption policies;
- employees whose activities are associated with an increased risk of corruption;
- employees responsible for internal monitoring and audit of documentation and reporting.
In accordance with the provisions of Article 57 of the Labor Code of the Russian Federation, the employment contract includes the employee's job rights and obligations provided for by labor and other legislation. Therefore, the functional responsibilities of employees responsible for the implementation of anti-corruption policies are prescribed in job descriptions and collective labor agreements of organizations.
If the duty of an employee to counteract and prevent corruption offenses is spelled out in the employment contract, in case of violations or improper performance of duties, a disciplinary penalty is imposed on him as provided for by the Labor Code of the Russian Federation.
Legal and regulatory framework
The legislative framework for anti-corruption policy in budgetary organizations is:
- Labor Code of Russia;
- Federal Law No. 273 dated 25.12.2008 "On Combating Corruption";
- Federal Law No. 7 of 01/12/1996 "On non-profit organizations";
- Federal Law No. 402 dated 06.12.2011 "On accounting";
- Decree of the Government of the Russian Federation No. 29 of January 21, 2015 "On approval of the rules for drawing up labor contracts with citizens holding positions in state and municipal organizations";
- Methodological recommendations of the Ministry of Labor and Social Protection of the Russian Federation on the adoption of measures to prevent and combat corruption from 08.11.2013.
National Anti-Corruption Plan
The National Plan for the Prevention of Corruption Offenses is a program document adopted at the state level in order to carry out measures for the prevention and fight against corruption, and to strengthen the security of Russia. It is approved annually by the Decree of the President of the Russian Federation.
Fighting corruption in the civil service
Service in government organizations implies high responsibility. Therefore, today lawyers propose to amend the Criminal Code of the Russian Federation and the Code of Criminal Procedure of the Russian Federation, which will expand the definition of criminal offenses and the evidence base for such types of crimes, supplementing it with evidence obtained using technical means of recording information (video and audio recordings). It is difficult to prove a bribe without such amendments.
The judicial system will perform anti-corruption functions more efficiently if the flow of lawsuits on behalf of the state against employees of municipal or budget organizations caught committing corruption offenses increases. The same applies to commercial organizations that can file claims if they incur losses from the corruption schemes of their counterparties.
The main purpose of the amendments is to create a high risk of material loss for both counterparties of corrupt transactions. When implementing anti-corruption policy, it is necessary to enlist the support of citizens and organizations affected by corruption, as well as public figures whose activities are aimed at preventing corruption offenses.
Specificity of anti-corruption programs of individual departments
Features of corruption schemes directly depend on the specifics of the department. Therefore, each institution requires professional assistance from outside experts to prepare an anti-corruption program.
Ministries and federal executive authorities form and approve basic anti-corruption methods. Such programs exist in the Ministry of Education and Science, the Federal Antimonopoly Service, the Ministry of Culture, the Ministry of Environmental Protection (nature), the Rosselkhoznadzor, etc.
Activities provided for in departmental anti-corruption programs include:
- The practice of systematically transferring employees to another position within a government body or to a similar position in another department. In such a situation, the costs of retraining an employee are lower than losses from corruption offenses.
- Monitoring of employees by their managers in order to control the implementation of assigned tasks.
- Monitoring and improving the efficiency of officials 'reactions to citizens' appeals.
- Increasing the availability of services provided by government agencies.
- Creation of a special regime for the functioning of citizen reception centers - the introduction of technologies that ensure the rapid consideration of applications, information stands with the rights of visitors and the duties of employees.
Regional methods of corruption prevention
Experts point out an interesting trend: the formation of regional anti-corruption legislation by the constituent entities of the Russian Federation is ahead of the federal regulatory framework. Representatives of the legislative and executive authorities at the local level form the methods of prevention of corruption crimes within the framework of their powers - commissions are created to combat manifestations of corruption.
Examples of local (regional) anti-corruption regulations and programs:
The Anti-Corruption Law of the Republic of Tatarstan of 2006, which regulates the goals, principles, directions and methods of implementing the anti-corruption program and countering offenses in this area.
The sectoral anti-corruption program concerning preventive measures in local executive bodies was adopted in 2006 in the Astrakhan region and approved by the Resolution of the Government of the Territory.
A similar program was approved in 1999 by the Resolution of the Administration of the Nizhny Novgorod Region. It regulates the ways of implementing anti-corruption measures in management structures, in the financial market, in the field of privatization, land distribution, budgeting, citizen services and social policy.
The administration of the Vladimir region once every two years develops and approves Comprehensive programs for the prevention and fight against offenses in the field of corruption. For this, city, district and regional interdepartmental commissions are being created, the purpose of which is to prevent and combat crime, corruption, terrorism and drug trafficking.
Under the administration of the Head of the Republic of Komi, an Interdepartmental Commission was created on strengthening law and order and public safety, one of the directions of its activity is the implementation of anti-corruption measures.
In the Tomsk region, a special Commission for Combating Corruption, subordinate to the Head of the Regional Administration, and the Control Chamber have been created. The functions of the Commission include: monitoring the activities of civil servants in the region, detecting the conditions and causes of corruption offenses, auditing the performance of officials' powers, analyzing the effectiveness of management structures, checking the regulations of the Tomsk region to detect provisions that contribute to the spread of corruption.
In the Yamalo-Nenets autonomy, by the resolution of the local State Duma, the Commission for the audit of the okrug's normative legal acts was established to identify the provisions that provoke the commission of corruption offenses.
A similar commission functions in the Bryansk region of Russia.
In another six subjects of the federation, projects of anti-corruption measures have been created and are being approved. These are Buryatia, Kurgan, Tomsk and Saratov regions, Karelia, Udmurtia. Such regional programs are put into effect by the decree of the head of the region or territory of the constituent entity of the Russian Federation.
Directions for the development of anti-corruption policy in organizations
For the effective implementation of anti-corruption policy, it is necessary to introduce a set of measures at the state and local levels. At the level of the Russian Federation, it is necessary to improve anti-corruption legislation and ensure the development of preventive measures. This requires a phased expansion of the regulatory framework governing anti-corruption measures. It is necessary to adopt a special federal law on the fight against corruption, which provides for the directions of state policy in this area.
The next stage in the creation of a legislative anti-corruption base is the introduction of provisions on the prevention of corruption offenses in federal laws and regulations on public service and local government bodies. In order to strengthen the anti-corruption fight on the part of law enforcement agencies and courts, supervising organizations, the introduction of restrictions and prohibitions for officials, special amendments are necessary for such federal laws:
- "About the police"
- "On the prosecutor's office"
- "On the status of judges" and "On justices of the peace"
- "On the Federal Security Service"
- "About the customs service"
- "About military personnel"
- "About the Central Bank"
But amendments to the legislation alone are not enough. Preventive anti-corruption measures should be gradually incorporated into all areas of the legislation of the Russian Federation. First of all - in laws and regulations in the field of health care, budgetary policy, education, taxation, land management. It is also necessary to improve the criminal and administrative legislation, strengthen the responsibility of officials and citizens for committing corruption offenses, taking into account the international obligations assumed by the Russian Federation.
For a systematic solution to the issues of the state's anti-corruption policy, one special law is not enough. Effective prevention requires a whole set of regulations governing various areas, including laws:
- About lobbying.
- On increasing liability for money laundering.
- On the forced confiscation of property and funds acquired as a result of criminal activity.
- On state monitoring of the compliance of expenses with declared income.
- On the obligatory declaration of earnings by the highest apparatus of civil servants (deputies and officials working in state and municipal executive bodies, as well as judges).
- Amendments to legislative acts regarding the passage of public service - restricting the transfer of employees to work in commercial companies that were controlled during the performance of public service or related to the performance of official duties. A similar limitation should cover deputies of all levels.
- Amendments to the Civil Code of the Russian Federation on the invalidation of contracts, licenses and permits, if it was possible to establish that they were obtained by corruption.
A separate area of legislative work in the anti-corruption area is the verification of existing regulations, including:
- elimination of contradictions and inaccuracies in the legislation that contribute to corruption offenses;
- reduction in the number of reference provisions in current regulations;
- differentiation of corruption offenses;
- systematic revision of the amount of duties and penalties - high sanctions are as ineffective as low ones, as they provoke bribe-giving.
Ideological and educational anti-corruption activities include:
- publishing successful examples of corruption prevention in other states;
- destruction of the myth about the inviolability of corruption in Russia with the help of the media;
- formation of a system of "local publications" to inform about cases of corruption among lower officials;
- constant informing the population through the media about the results of the implementation of anti-corruption programs.
For effective anti-corruption work, the media will need to eliminate their dependence on representatives of the executive branch. Otherwise, it will not be possible to achieve transparency in the fight against corruption.
International cooperation in the field of combating corruption will allow us to fight it at the highest level of government. To improve interaction in this area, you will need:
- Ratification of international agreements on the extradition of persons accused of committing corruption offenses.
- Implementation of international accounting rules.
- The imposition of sanctions against companies in states whose legislation does not provide for liability for bribes.
- International exchange of information (on companies that use corruption schemes).
- Creation of uniform rules for collecting the evidence base for corruption offenses.
- Joint training of specialists in the field of anti-corruption.
- International assistance in the formation of anti-corruption methods.
The main task of international cooperation in the field of combating and preventing corruption is to prevent the movement of capital from engaging in criminal activities to other states.
The implementation of measures to prevent corruption always meets with resistance from officials of state authorities. In the early stages, an increase in the number of corruption offenses may be observed. But the purposeful efforts of the state and society will make it possible to overcome this phenomenon.