Conflict over justice Because with the elimination of abuse of power, the cunning ones will go unpunished The administrator and minister Carlo Nordio is moving directly towards the repeal of the law, but for the head of the Anti-Corruption Authority, Giuseppe Busia, a regulatory vacuum may be created. Interview with

“The government and this ministry will have no hesitation regarding the removal of abuse of power. We will not hesitate to do, say or promise.” Minister of Justice Carlo Nordio, one of the most determined figures who always wants to send the law to the attic, leaves no loophole. The process of annulment of the crime began with the approval of Article 1 of the bill named after the Keeper of the Seals by the Senate Judiciary Committee chaired by Giulia Bongiorno.

An election that split the center-left camp, with Italia Viva combining its votes with the majority’s votes. This issue is fueling internal debates even in the Democratic Party, which voted against the article in Parliament: “We – explains Matteo Ricci, mayor of Pesaro and coordinator of mayors of the Democratic Party – demand a review of the abuse of power. This means that 95 percent of cases “It is a crime for which it results in acquittal or expulsion, and which the executive runs the risk of committing simply by voting or signing a document. It does not work and risks clogging up the judicial system, which has so far been historically very slow.” Anac’s chairman, Giuseppe Busia, had a different opinion. opinion and explains his position to

Mr. President, the line you have repeatedly expressed is that the crime of abuse of power should not be abolished, but more work should be done on inspections. How?

“Collaborative preventive controls are essential and it is no coincidence that they are a fundamental part of the Pnrr architecture. They are an advantage for the administrations themselves, because not only the money we get and the need to make large investments with which we depend the future of Italy can fall into the wrong hands, but this money will really benefit The tool of preventive and collaborative checks we have adopted is proving to be very effective. It takes place at the request of the stations’ own contracting parties, which stipulate an agreement with the administrations administering the contract, they determine which documents we check and we check the documents and respond within about ten days. It slows down the procedure but helps us avoid mistakes “It allows us to respect the law and overcome the so-called ‘signature fear’ of administrations.”

Abuse of power is often said to be a crime associated with mayors, but in reality it concerns the entire public administration. What problems might the removal process cause?

“To eliminate it completely risks creating significant legislative gaps. Let me give an example: the commissioner of a competition who favors a friendly candidate, if he does not do so in return for the favor, is neither guilty of corruption nor in the name of the principle of fairness and security, which is the essential nature of criminal proceedings.” , bid-rigging, which applies to tenders, not personnel selection. Similarly, anyone who attempts to rig the bid can be charged. If the bid-rigger instead places a direct bid above the threshold that would warrant the bid, he or she will go unpunished without malfeasance.”

In practice, will we proceed from a rule that is perhaps too restrictive for the Wild West?

“The law needs to be specified, defined and made mandatory so that there is no ambiguity in the law, it covers only certain violations of the law, and there is no discretion as in some sentences regarding general violations. It should be completely repealed.” “I repeat, it creates gaps. We can say that the goal is right, but the means are wrong.”

How do you think judges will act if reform is likely to occur?

“The risk is that judges will expand to other types of crimes, an unhealthy thing that would betray the goals of the same reform introduced by Minister Nordio. On the one hand, the failure to punish serious behavior and other convictions as a result of an overly broad interpretation of other types of crimes”.

“The risk is that judges will expand to other types of crimes, an unhealthy thing that would betray the goals of the same reform implemented by Minister Nordio.” So Giuseppe Busia, president of Anac, told

Speaking of the minister, he claims that the abuse of power was a failure because only nine out of 5 thousand cases resulted in convictions. The data you mention is from 2021, but the order of magnitude is consistent with existing data.

“I think that this provision has been applied incorrectly, but the right way is not to cancel it. More precisely, it is necessary to regulate so that all cases that result in dismissal are not opened, because this is correct. To prevent criminal cases from being opened, to prevent the suspect from being damaged in terms of image, and at the same time to prevent unnecessary activation of the justice machine.” “The numbers simply tell us that there is a problem. So the government is right to deal with this problem, but let’s discuss how to solve it.”

President Mattarella might have been concerned because the elimination of crime combined with the weakening of influence smuggling would make Italian legislation much more lenient than its European partners. Is there any risk?

“Conflicts with European rules may arise. Our President emphasized the importance of combating this evil on the occasion of World Anti-Corruption Day. His testimony is a guide for all institutions and all citizens. The risk that arises is as follows: The United Nations, with the 2003 Merida Convention, has a duty to It calls for abuse to be incorporated into countries’ laws, which the vast majority of European states have adopted.The EU Commission has proposed a directive that, if approved, would force Italy to step back to harmonize its regulatory system.

Proposed EU directive

On 3 May 2023, the European Commission developed the proposal for directive 2023/0135 (COD). The aim is to harmonize anti-corruption rules as well as the relevant sanctions system in all Member States. If the directive is approved, Italy would have to re-adopt a law punishing abuse of power, although it will soon be repealed.

Can abuse of power be said to be a ‘crime of espionage’ that serves to prevent more serious crimes such as corruption?

“What you say comes from a thesis that has caused a lot of controversy. I think it would be serious if interpreted in this way, because it would mean – in a metaphor – that the judiciary will use the crime of abuse of power as a tool to trawl, cast the net and then go and see if there is corruption among the creations.” “Research it. It’s not a method I hesitate to share because there are people being judged.”

If you had to explain to a young graduate student why misconduct should be reformed, not eliminated, what words would you use?

“I would explain to him that lifting this ban risks leaving unpunished serious behavior, such as helping a friend in a public competition or choosing a less efficient and more expensive company when a public contract is awarded. Corruption is a karst crime that causes serious harm to society. And The damage is measured not only by the money that gets into the hands of the corrupt, but also by the distrust in institutions. This is a worm on democracy that must be combated, and the most powerful weapon we have is prevention. We, as the Institution, are committed to both promoting simplification and ensuring controls and transparency, and “We are working intensively on the digitalization of tenders to enable all citizens to see how administrations spend money.”


Source: Today IT