This year the Belarusian public has witnessed a number of high-profile revelations in the field of fighting corruption. These include mass detentions of the management staff of the Ministry of Health of the Republic of Belarus, including the deputy minister, directors of a number of enterprises (“Belmedtechnika”, others), chief doctors of several clinical hospitals in Minsk, and others.

This incident was widely covered in mass media. The public was shocked by the scale of the anti-corruption case in the medical field. The number of suspects is more than 60. According to the newspaper “Narodnaya Volya”, there has never been as many people detained in the history of independent Belarus.

Corruption Belarus

The public highly appreciated the efforts of the State Security Committee of the Republic of Belarus in the fight against corruption. Corruption is a very serious problem, and it is necessary to confront it constantly. There are therefore two resulting conclusions.

First of all, the events of this year have demonstrated that corruption is a mass phenomenon, despite the crusade against those who carry it out. In support of this, dozens of other cases in the country can be cited (detentions of the presidential aide – the inspector for the Grodno region, responsible employees of other ministries, directors of enterprises, chairmen of city executive committees). And all of these took place this year alone. In general, the fight against corruption continues to be a problem for the state and society.

The second conclusion is that the sole efforts of the State Security Committee of the Republic of Belarus are not enough. Help from the general public is needed; the power of public opinion overcomes corruption too. The formation of public opinion aimed at overcoming corruption should be given importance. The masses must know the Law of the Republic of Belarus “On the Fight against Corruption”, the documents of the United Nations, and of the European Union on fighting corruption. Such an approach calls for regular holding of conferences, seminars, and roundtables, broad and open discussions.

The Republican Public Association for the Protection of Human Rights (the Belarusian section of the International Society for Human Rights) will take an active part in mobilizing the public to overcome corruption.

Ivan Kotlyar,

Chairman of the Board of the Belarusian section of the ISHR, professor