The lack of transparency in the justice system, translated into the refusal to publicize the judgments, procedures and ways of working of the Judiciary, do not allow citizens to know the ways to access justice and generates a favorable climate for corruption.
During the panel “Dismantling corruption pacts in the justice system” at the meeting “Fight Against Corruption: New Approaches for Uncertain Times”, organized by Ethos. Laboratory of Public Policies, Laurence Pantin, coordinator of the Transparency in Justice Program of Mexico Evalúa explained that, in criminal matters, there are times when a person reports a crime and the Public Ministry comes to ask for money or favors for the simple fact to do your job.
In addition to the fact that there are other moments of corruption such as the delivery of money to the police to avoid an arrest, or the bribes by the lawyers that encourage a bad job by the judges.
Corruption involves different actors at all levels. Corruption exists from the moment there is an attempt to influence the decisions or acts of certain officials or judges”, he said.
Pantin considered that, in order to reduce corruption, the selection of judges should be improved, while the use of digital justice should be promoted, which would help avoid contact between users and officials when they are not necessary, in addition to It allows to make the procedures more efficient and avoids manipulations or alterations in the files.
In the same vein, Alejandro González, from the World Justice Project, stated that the digitization of the Judiciary is a fundamental element to reduce the risks of corruption.
For her part, Flor Montes de Oca, of Equis Justicia para las Mujeres, maintained that among the hot spots of corruption within the judicial system are the processes of appointing the heads of the systems, where many times they are obscure processes, without the information or transparency that allows knowing the process.
“The lack of transparency generates a climate conducive to corruption, at the moment in which there is no publicity about the sentences or the procedures or the forms of work that the Judiciary has or, particularly, there is no possibility of knowing how set these mechanisms in motion.
“And where there is no real possibility of audits and citizen control mechanisms that limit or sanction abuses of power by this body, it will not be possible to continue working towards making things easier for citizens,” he said.
The experts added that it is necessary to link justice system reform agendas with the anti-corruption agenda, in a direct, decisive and urgent way, in order to focus anti-corruption efforts on the areas that require immediate attention.
Risks in purchases
At another table in the forum organized by Ethos, anti-corruption experts stressed that Covid 19 has highlighted the need for governments to act quickly and effectively to ensure the well-being of the population, but when this does not occur in a context of transparency, acts of corruption.
When participating in the panel, “Public procurement: can the government respond to an emergency without undermining the law?”, Pablo Montes, a member of Ernst & Young, stressed that the problem is not a direct award in the context of an emergency, but there is no adequate protocol in a country where there are constant natural emergencies, to make a purchase that guarantees speed, transparency and efficiency.
“It is not valid to break the law even when there is a public benefit, it is not the power of an official to say when the law applies and when not, the process in which the law is generated is to guide officials in that work,” he stressed. .
Meanwhile, Eduardo Bohorquez, from Transparencia Mexicana, expressed that it is worrying how in the emergency caused by the coronavirus, the authorities legalize many of the decisions a priori, because two years after the pandemic and even when the government itself has given it up completed, purchases continue to be made in the matter with a high risk of corruption.
While Álvaro Quintero, representative of the IMSS, believes that in times like the pandemic, it is necessary to analyze how the regulatory framework should be adapted to deal with a health emergency.