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The spending and incomes of any official will personally controlled by RF President Vladimir Putin through the head of his administration, Sergei Ivanov, and the Presidential Anti-Corruption Council. The president signed the corresponding decrees on Tuesday in furtherance of the measures laid down in the anti-corruption legislation. According to the decrees, state employees are required to submit their spending declarations by July 1.
The decrees signed by the RF president on Tuesday contain a lot of innovations, the Rossiyskaya Gazeta daily writes. The income certificates for the first time contain information about foreign accounts, securities and real estate. Also for the first time the procedure for the submission of the spending information, for which a special certificate is provided. Legislative innovations in respect of the Central Bank, funds and state corporations are regulated in detail. There is one more innovation: the decree states that the president, who is also head of the Anti-Corruption Council, the head of the Presidium of this Council (Ivanov) or a person authorised by them can instruct the States Service and Personnel Department to verify the accuracy of the information about incomes and spending. It is allowed to submit information about incomes, spending and estate liability for 2012 until July 1, 2013.
The state from now on is also ready to provide protection to the citizens, who reported corruption facts and for this were subjected to persecution or pressure, the Komsomolskaya Pravda newspaper writes. The head of the RF presidential administration, Sergei Ivanov, said that a lawyer at the expense of the state may be given to them in case of legal prosecution. However, still nobody is going to consider anonymous reports.
The Kremlin, directly links Putin’s initiatives to the idea of ··nationalisation of the elite, the Kommersant daily emphasises. The law, prohibiting officials to have accounts in foreign banks, shares of foreign companies and securities, was submitted by the RF president to the State Duma lower house of parliament in February (passed in the first reading.) “If a person has foreign accounts, we give him three months to get rid of these accounts, but before July 1 he must report this and show it in the declaration,” Sergei Ivanov explained the meaning of Tuesday’s presidential decrees. Ivanov called these three months a “transition period” and explained the reason for its urgent introduction: “We do not want to be accused by anybody of dragging our feet and ignoring 2012, and only in 2013 introducing the new rules of the game according to which the declarations will be submitted only in 2014.”
The head of the RF presidential administration does not rule out that these measures will results in the outflow of personnel from civil service.
“New rules of the game have been introduced, and officials will have to accept them regardless of whether they like it or not, a source of the Kommersant daily in the presidential administration said. “The people themselves should determine their priorities and understand what is more important for them - the service or anything else. Some will abandon their accounts and property, but already now it is clear that some officials will prefer not to wait when Ivanov reported to Putin on the results of the declarations’ check, and will resign themselves.”
According to President of the INDEM Foundation for applied political studies Georgy Satarov, quoted by the Novye Izvestia newspaper, the world’s experience of such kind of fight shows that corruption for some time is suppressed, but then grows and becomes more mature. “We should begin with answering the question why over the past 10-12 years corruption has grown so wildly. The answer is very simple: the external control over the bureaucracy is lost. But it is normal political competition, a strong opposition, freely working non-governmental organisations, the division of powers, the system of checks and balances, especially independent judiciary. These mechanisms have been lost today,” said Satarov.
Meanwhile, a source of Nezavisimaya Gazeta newspaper in the State Duma staff drew attention to a strange coincidence of dates: the signing of the current Putin’s decree and the deadline for income declarations’ submission. “Most likely it was done intentionally and so that officials and lawmakers could not retroactively adjust the already fixed income to their real spending, which, in principle, is quite easily calculated and checked through banks and other financial institutions.” In addition, the newspaper’s source said, it is necessary not to forget that by July not only the law banning officials to have foreign accounts will come into force, but also the deadline for closing them will expire.