“Unacceptable lack of transparency and corruption prevention”

(Adnkronos) – Municipalities dissolved for ‘rejected’ mafia on transparency and prevention of corruption. From the critical issues related to the role of ‘Responsible for the prevention of corruption and transparency’ to the non-fulfillment of the ‘Three-year plan for the prevention of corruption and transparency’, from the shortcomings with respect to the obligations envisaged for the ‘Transparent administration’ sections of the website of commissariats to those on the ‘Annual report on anti-corruption measures’, a picture with many shadows emerges from the “Report on corruption prevention and transparency in municipalities dissolved by mafia”, unanimously approved by the Parliamentary Anti-Mafia Commission, rapporteur the president Nicola Morra .

The analysis examined the data regarding transparency and the prevention of corruption in Italian municipalities which in 2020 (or in a part of it) were governed by an extraordinary Commission after a dissolution. During the year in question, 53 Municipalities entrusted to a commissioner management: to the 42 that were in this condition on January 1 (17 of which then returned to the vote in September 2020), 11 were added in the for which the dissolution was ordered during the same calendar year.

“The in-depth analysis – reads the report of the Parliamentary Anti-Mafia Commission – highlighted first of all that the multiple legislative provisions and measures adopted by the system to prevent corruption, and first of all those aimed at ensuring the transparency of administrative action , are largely neglected if not even canceled, not only before the dissolution but also subsequently during the extraordinary management period “. In the face of the new attitude of organized crime which acts through a “systematic infiltration of public apparatuses” and in the face of the importance of “preventing corruption to counter its infiltration into the public administration”, according to the Parliamentary Anti-Mafia Commission, “the lack of attention to transparency and the prevention of corruption is not acceptable in those administrative situations whose previous activity has been polluted and conditioned and which attempts are made to bring back to legality through the action of the commissioner management “.

Therefore, in the first place “a prompt adhesion by the” dissolved “municipalities to the national registry of the resident population is necessary. management of lists in the face of possible manipulations in the interest of organized crime. The administrative investigations leading up to the dissolution of the municipalities (as well as judicial investigations) have often highlighted the conduct of pollution precisely at this delicate moment in the democratic life of local authorities “.

According to the Commission, “the essentiality of the role of the Manager for the prevention of corruption and transparency” should also be considered and the “conditions for him to be able to effectively perform the functions entrusted to him by the regulations”. It is then necessary, looking at the ‘future’ of the institution and, more generally, with a far-sighted perspective of prevention of criminal infiltrations, rethinking the rules that govern the figure of the “Municipal Secretary who, as a rule, is also assigned the role as Head of Corruption Prevention and Transparency “. A key role for which, according to the Commission, “economic, personnel and instrumental resources (and among these an appropriate computerization)” must be provided, as well as “adequate professional training”.

“Even more, in the municipalities dissolved due to mafia infiltrations, it would be desirable that the extraordinary commissions operate an accurate vigilance and impulse with respect to the work of the Head for the prevention of corruption and transparency, replacing him or taking over his functions in the event of inadequacy “, underlines the Commission which noted” delays “in the development of the ‘Three-year plan for the prevention of corruption and transparency’.

“The ‘Transparent administration’ section of the municipal commissioner’s website presents content that is deficient and does not comply with the regulatory provisions in many respects and aspects, thus preventing the widespread control of the work of the administrations that the ‘transparency’ legislation aims to guarantee”, he underlines furthermore, the Anti-Mafia Commission, which instead considers it essential to guarantee the completeness of the publication of the data concerning the procedures of public evidence and the choice of the subjects to whom to entrust the supply of goods or services or the realization of public works and the content of the contracts stipulated “.

To overcome these problems, the Anti-Mafia Commission considers an “adequate solution” the one proposed by the “President of the National Anti-Corruption Authority to establish a single portal for the management of the ‘Transparent Administration’ section: in this way the significant advantage of freeing the common from the financial burden of relying on external companies for the design, implementation and management of transparency on the website, as well as the important result of the centralized control of the published contents and a unitary training of the personnel assigned to data entry “. “Furthermore, the creation of a single portal would guarantee citizens a common interface, facilitating access to information and their use”, he continues.

“Extremely inadequate – underlines the Parliamentary Commission – was also the indication of the ‘additional measures, in addition to the mandatory ones’, as well as the profiles relating to personnel, in particular (but not only) the managerial one. The results of the analysis carried out show the lack of attention to issues concerning the formation, rotation, verification of cases of incompatibility and non-transferability or cases of pantouflage, protection of whistleblower anonymity, reporting of offenses or the application of sanctions “.

According to the Commission, “an effective corruption prevention system and complete transparency take on an essential importance, not only for the commissioner management phase, but above all for the future life of the institution when, once the mandate of the Extraordinary Commission is over, it will return to normal functioning of local self-government “. According to the parliamentary body, it would be desirable to “identify a third party that would monitor compliance with the legislation on transparency and the prevention of corruption in the municipalities dissolved by the mafia, also performing a support and impulse function in against extraordinary commissions “. One could reflect, concludes the Commission, “on the possibility of entrusting these tasks to an internal structure within the ANAC”.

THE DATA – The Report also contains some data on the phenomenon of dissolution due to the mafia. From 1991 to 31 December 2020, 324 municipal administrations were dissolved for mafia. “The dissolution measures were particularly numerous from 1991 to 1993, in the year 2012 and in the period 2017-2018. The limited number of dissolution that took place in the year 2020 – just eleven, therefore eight less than in the year previous – could be related to a reduced control activity caused by the health emergency for the pandemic, which would have diverted attention towards other objectives – observes the Commission – This possibility is not at all reassuring, generating the fear that the activity corruption may have continued to thrive undisturbed in certain situations at greater risk of mafia infiltration “.

The Commission, reporting the data reported at the hearing by the Head of the Department for Internal and Territorial Affairs, underlines that the bodies dissolved for mafia between August 1991 and November 30 2021 were 364, in particular 357 municipalities and 7 companies sanitary. The “dissolution – observes the Commission – concerned entities in eleven Italian regions, demonstrating how the phenomenon is no longer limited to the regions of southern Italy, ‘historically’ affected by the presence of organized crime of the mafia type, having involved, albeit in lower extent, even regions of northern Italy “.

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