Friday, December 12, 2008

Transparency International HELLAS blames corruption as cause of riots

Transparency International Hellas has laid the blame for the riots at the feet of the level of corruption that exist in Greece. When it comes to corruption, Greece comes in at the Top 5 in Europe. (not on the good end). In 2008 Greece ranked 57, worse of than South Africa (54) or Botswana (36). I mention these two countries because many in Greece constantly put down African countries.

In its press release Transparency International claims that the youth especially have a belief that laws are not being enforced, that no one takes any responsibility, that the education system is sick. It also states that not only is corruption instilled as an everyday fact of life but that it has also become part of the tradition of life.

I am not trying to justify the rioters, but Governments and those with power have to take responsibility for their actions.
When the lawyer of the policeman who fired the shot, comes out before the coroners inquest and declares that the death was a result of a ricochet,
When the lawyer continues and says that in time we will see if the youth should or should not have been shot,
When the policeman were not placed in immediate custody,
When the lawyer for the policeman says that he had to take on the case pro-bono because the previous lawyer asked for a certain 'sum' to be placed in her bank account to get a favourable hearing,

Well you can see why the family of the deceased youth hired their own doctor to witness the autopsy,
You can also understand why people think that corruption is so widespread, and these inflamatory remarks came out recently, after the bulk of the rioting had been done.

Corruption has become so commonplace that no one is ashamed of asking for a bribe, doctors ask it outright, people ask each other, how much did you pay for your degree. And of course this state of affairs would eventually spill out one way or another.

But of course its the little guy who gets hurt, the villas and the shops of the elite are still fine, the poor shop owners took the brunt, the police took a beating as they were ordered by the government to stand by and watch. And in the end, me and a few other guys in greece - the only taxpayers are left to foot the bill for all this.


Rositta said...

Just a couple points; here if a policeman shoots anyone it is investigated by a Special Investigative Unit (SIU) that also has civilians on the team. No policeman is carted off to jail and charged immediately after a shooting until fully investigated. In fact they are transferred to desk duty at full pay until such time the investigations is complete.
As to bribery and corruption yes, I know about it. This past year my MIL was in hospital in Athens and we had to pay the nurses and doctors under the table. That is wrong yet it seems to be the system. Creating havoc and causing billions of dollars (1.3B) worth damage is not going to do it. My husband says nothing has changed in Greece and from my limited (2 month a year) visits I don't see much change either except that it's gotten way more expensive. Start by electing better government, making laws that people can live with and giving the police the power to enforce the laws. Oh yes, pay the police better...simplistic, maybe, but violence has never worked...ciao

CaliforniaKat said...

I couldn't agree with you more, and that's how I wrote my commentary for UK media many days ago. One of the many reasons I identify with you.

Unknown said...

The 'coverage' in Turkey is colored red; can you put the last three art on Internations as well?

Anonymous said...

I enjoy this blog and always wish for more frequent entries. The recent events in Greece are a lot of chickens coming home to roost. I see no cause for optimism whatsoever; the problems Greece faces are so numerous and so entrenched, it's difficult to know where to start. Politicians, media, police, the state in general are all superlatively bad examples of their type. The populace doesn't know what it wants, and is incoherent and hypocritical. I write this as a Greek and it gives me no pleasure at all but the tragic fact is: Greece is totally f**ked.

Vassili - Mike said...

Rositta - Here in Greece, things are bit different. You are detained until a court can decide what to do with you for many misdemeanours. So if you are found without your Identity Card on a Saturday, the police have the right to detain you until Monday when the courts can hear the case, and then you run off home, pick up your card and show it to the police. And you yes Violence is never the answer