2 – What do You know about Moldova?
BSSB.BE bti-project.org 11.10.2016
3 | Rule of Law
Being a parliamentary republic, the legislative power is strong in Moldova. Although the parliament is supposed to play the most important role, this is not always the case. The influence of each power still depends, to a certain degree, on the political figure at the helm of the state and the support he enjoys. For instance, when Vladimir Voronin was president, it was de facto the presidency and, to some extent, the judiciary that decided the policies that needed to be adopted both by the government and the parliament.
De facto implementation started in 2012 with the approval of the action plan. Since its creation in 2007, the National Institute of Justice has been is a center for the initial and continuing training of candidates for judges and prosecutors, as well as the professional training of judges, prosecutors and other employees in the justice sector. The major problem in reforming the justice system remains the under-reformed prosecutor’s office, which broadly inherited the Soviet system, meaning that it is largely politically controlled
In 2015-2016, a further increase is expected. Office abuse happens quite often in Moldova, however, legal prosecution and court convictions are rare for public servants and an almost nonexistent for high-ranking politicians. Several cases of prosecution of high-ranking officials, including ministers, are being carried out by the National Anti-Corruption Center, but as most of them belong to the political groups of the ruling coalition, expectations of convictions are very low.
However, in January 2015, the former minister of interior who was in office during the violent crackdown on protesters in April 2009 was sentenced to four years in prison, having been found guilty of misconduct that led to the death of a person. Another telling example is the imbalance in convictions, allegedly caused by corruption and political influence.
In 2014, a judge was sentenced to three years of imprisonment with a conditional suspension of his sentence for legalizing a hostile takeover of 27.5% of the shares from one of the biggest banks in Moldova. At the same time, another judge was sentenced to seven years in prison without suspension for accepting a bribe of $200. Prosecution of office abuse 6 The Republic of Moldova is committed to ensuring respect for civil rights and applying an efficient mechanism of implementation.
The European Court of Human Rights (ECHR) continued to issue judgments in 2012-2013 for violations of human rights in Moldova, including violation of Article 2 of the ECHR – the right to life. With respect to cases of death, the ECHR criticized in its judgments the manner in which investigations are conducted, the length of these investigations, bad practices of the frequent reopening of criminal proceedings, and ineffective and unilateral investigation by the authorities.
In four other judgments, the ECHR condemned the Republic of Moldova for ineffective investigation of cases of ill-treatment, allegations of rape and maltreatment of suspects According to a report of the NGO Promo-LEX, in 2012-2013, 1,689 complaints of torture and ill-treatment were filed, usually because of inhuman, humiliating and degrading methods used by the police. Nevertheless, no police officer has been sentenced to imprisonment. Some amendments to the legislation have been made which define torture as a serious crime and which provide that every complaint on torture has to be reviewed within 15 days. Although there are still many cases of torture, ill-treatment, bad conditions for detention, etc., the situation has slightly improved over the last two years.
4 | Stability of Democratic Institutions
The efficiency of democratic institutions in Moldova is often challenged by frictions between different political groups. These frictions are transferred to the level of state institutions and affect the performance of democratic institutions. Overall, among the many institutional conflicts, three of them seem of major importance. The first involves a conflict between the government and parliament in which the government often holds a different position relative to the parliament.
The conflict between the presidency and the judiciary, due to the fact that the president seems to be very focused on reform of the justice system and on the promotion of judges. In addition, the conflict between the National Anti-Corruption Center and the Ministry of Interior bears particular mention. Although these conflicts are between political players and interest groups, personal animosities commonly spill over to institutions and potentially limit their efficiency.
Performance of democratic institutions 6 In the short history of Moldova, there has been an overall commitment to democratic institutions, despite differing degrees of devotion with regard to respecting the rules. Although some political players have the propensity to violate the democratic procedure, so far the system has kept the process within a democratic framework. In the 2013-2014 period, no veto-players stepped in, and the potential for this is low. The army has neither the intention nor the capacity to undermine democratic institutions. Although the church is willing to play a more active role in shaping some policies, it cannot be considered a veto power. Commitment to democratic institutions .
However, the lack of tradition in party democracy has proven to be a key problem in establishing a truly representative party system. Most parties are established around leaders and very few parties have survived the transition from one leader to another.
The increasing division of parties in Moldova is broadly geopolitical as most parties are divided into pro-European and pro-Russian sides, reflecting the identity division within Moldova. Some minor parties still advocate for unification with Romania. Polarization regarding economic and social polices is underdeveloped and does not seem to play an important role during electoral campaigns.
The self-organization of society is not well-developed and is mainly concentrated in the capital, where a group of NGOs and think tanks have some access to decisionmakers. Business usually has good connections to decision-makers, but as a rule business leaders’ influence is exerted through individual well-connected politicians. State protectionism and paternalism is expected from the government by a major part of the population that still prefers the return to the Soviet system of social protection.
Trade unions exist, but have been sidelined after the collapse of the Soviet system. They currently play a weak role in representing workers’ interests. Interest groups 6 Overall, the parties and movements that reject democracy are marginal and do not enter parliament. All parties and politicians represented in state institutions officially endorse democracy and declare their commitment to democratic procedures. However, there is still disappointment among the population with respect to the performance of democratic institutions and public institutions in general.
- According to the Barometer of Public Opinion survey conducted by the Institute for Public Policy in 2014, only 26% trust the government, 24% trust the parliament and the presidency, 23% trust the judicial system, and political parties received the lowest ranking of 22%. Among public authorities, the local administration has the highest level of trust with an approval rating of 55%.
- At the same time, 61% of the population thinks that things in Moldova are heading in the wrong direction and only 17% believes that Moldova is governed by the will of the people. Approval of democracy 6 Political and ethnic polarization have not resulted in major cleavages or societal conflicts.
- Rural Moldova, in particular, has maintained a moderate tradition of communal self-help, which is a key asset in combating the hardships of transition and subsistence, as demonstrated by the mass influx of cash remittances from Moldovans working abroad. The widening gap between rural and urban Moldova, the resulting migration flows to the cities, and, most of all, the out-migration of up to one-third of the working-age population have together seriously damaged the social fabric and voluntary self-help associations in the villages.
- As a result, self-help networks are based on personal trust, rather than institutionalized norms and procedures. Therefore, the degree of voluntary and autonomous organization remains low.
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*Youtube – https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=EYxN5CfuQyw – Woody Allen Documentary – American Masters – Full Length
*Youtube – https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=8VqlbyTrXmg&t=2s – Kymatica – Mind Blowing Documentary About Society. Are you ready for your mind to be blown and enlightened? All of society’s evils stem from man’s self hate towards his own soul. A documentary for those with an open mind\
* Youtube – https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=flwMHcZeTpo – The Waiting Room Mind Blowing Documentary 2015 HQ Full. The Waiting Room is a documentary film and social media project directed by Peter Nicks that follows the life and times of patients, doctors, and staff at Highland.
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