21 July 2011 - La Paz/Vienna, (UNODC) - Yury Fedotov, Executive Director of the United Nations Office on Drugs and Crime (UNODC) highlighted today in Vienna the role of Bolivia at the international level in the fight against corruption. The United Nations Convention against Corruption is the first global anti-corruption treaty. Although it boasts 154 States Parties, not all countries have the capacity to implement its provisions to the same degree. However, the Plurinational State of Bolivia provides an example of a country that has been undertaking vigorous efforts to adapt its laws and institutions to the Convention's standards.
Bolivia ratified the Convention in 2005 and volunteered to undergo a review of its application of the Convention in a pilot project in 2009. Colombia and the Netherlands, as reviewing States, noted in their final report "the deep concern of Bolivian authorities about the frequency with which investigators, prosecutors and judges working on corruption cases had been subject to threats and violence." They recommended that Bolivia adopt specific legislation and enhance security for the protection of those officials.
One of the key commitments that States Parties have undertaken is the protection of witnesses and whistle-blowers, as well as the criminalization of acts of physical force, threat and intimidation, and interference in the exercise of official duties by justice or law enforcement officials in relation to corruption offences. The international community has in the Convention agreed on the legal framework to deal with the risk and insecurity suffered by those who fight corruption in many States Parties.
UNODC supports the Government of Bolivia in strengthening its legal framework for the implementation of the Convention. The Office works with the Ministry for Institutional Transparency and Fight against Corruption, headed by Minister Nardi Suxo, to adapt the legislation and policies on witness protection to international standards. UNODC also provides assistance for the development of laws, such as the transparency law.The UNODC Country Programme (2010-2015) plans activities for capacity-building, strengthening of institutions and the development of procedures for asset recovery. UNODC has recently trained personnel from the Ministry for Institutional Transparency and Fight against Corruption. Bolivia has also expressed its interest in establishing a sub-regional study and training center on transparency and fight against corruption.
C Robert Brockmann
National Information Officer
United Nations Information Centre: Bolivia
T: (591 2) 2624 511