Latvia, Legislation

International Internet Magazine. Baltic States news & analytics Sunday, 24.06.2018, 08:05

Corruption watchdog wants Latvian ombudsman to retract his derogatory remarks

BC, Riga, 11.01.2017.Print version
The Corruption Prevention Bureau (KNAB) wants Latvian Ombudsman Juris Jansons to make a public apology for his derogatory remarks about the judiciary and the KNAB and to retract those remarks, writes LETA.

Jansons said on the public Latvian Television this morning that the politicians should have the courage and responsibility to liquidate or reorganize the KNAB.

"Maybe it is time to stop torturing the public and to finally put to sleep that half-dead hyena, burying it properly afterwards," Jansons said about the KNAB.

The ombudsman claimed that the corruption watchdog was inept both at fighting corruption and detecting conflicts of interests and also called the court incompetent, using less formal language, after it had rejected his complaint about the KNAB.

Jansons made his biting remarks after the court upheld the KNAB decision about giving him a verbal reprimand for non-compliance with the law on prevention of the conflict of interests in the work of state officials because, in addition to his work as the ombusdman, Jansons had also been sitting on the Scientific Advisory Council of Jurista Vards, a weekly newsletter for legal professionals.

The KNAB said that Jansons had been duly reprimanded for non-compliance with the law therefore the court did not overrule the penalty to the ombudsman. He was reprimanded not for exercising his official powers while in a conflict of interests but for non-compliance with the restrictions on state officials to combine several jobs, the corruption watchdog explained.

Even a minor misconduct by a high-ranking official, such as the Ombudsman, undermines the reputation of the public administration and the public trust in legitimacy of the actions by this particular official, the KNAB said, urging Jansons to make a public apology and to retract his derogatory remarks.

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