Bulgaria’s parliament seems to be lagging behind other countries with anticorruption efforts. According to the EU Observer, the country’s parliament failed to approve a critical piece of legislation that will help Bulgaria fight high-level corruption.
Some members of Bulgaria’s parliament opposed the draft law, which would allow anonymous reporting of corruption. The country’s current legislation does not cover this area of whistleblowing.
Over the part few years, Bulgaria has been the center of attention for organized crime and high-level corruption. In 2014, Bulgaria was ranked as one of the most corrupt EU states and western European countries, according to Transparency International’s annual corruption perceptions index. Bulgaria ranked 69th among 175 countries across the globe with a score of 43.
The anti-graft bill was drafted by Bulgaria’s former EU Commissioner Meglena Kuneva to improve transparency through the creation of an Anti-Corruption Bureau.
Members of Bulgaria’s parliament who shut down the law argued that tip-offs would open the gates for abuse and politically motivated cases. Other lawmakers suggested meeting half way by using evidence from protected witnesses instead of receiving anonymous tips.
In the past, the European Commission has largely criticized Bulgaria for its anticorruption efforts. Due to its laxed regulations, the country has failed to prosecute and sentence officials for corrupt behavior.
Bulgaria’s Prime Minister Boyko Borisov plans to once again present the reject anti-corruption bill to parliament prior to the bloc’s next monitoring report in January 2016.