Perfect excuse to fire unwanted officials?

Parliament has approved a law making it legal to sack officials for losing the trust of their bosses.

The term “loss of trust” is being introduced into Russian legislation for the first time. Back in September 2010, it was “approbated” on ex-Moscow mayor Yury Luzhkov.

The new law opens doors for both regional heads and state investigators who would like to order a check-up on officials’ income declarations and the assets of their family members.

Even if there is not enough evidence against the officials, the suspects can now immediately be fired.

Deputies believe that the new measure, instigated by President Medvedev, will make Russia’s fight against corruption more successful.

“It’s a comprehensive bill and if it’s implemented, it will provide a number of tools to enhance the efficiency of the fight against corruption,” Vladimir Pligin, from the State Duma Committee on Constitutional Legislation, told RT. “I would like to underline that the steps proposed are not only designed to increase criminal responsibility, they are also aimed at improving the performance of all public services.”

However, some political analysts believe that the new law will, in fact, boost corruption rather than stop it.

“What’s the use if an official with a million-dollar villa loses his post, but saves the villa?” Igor Bunin, president of the Political Technology Center, told Gudok newspaper. “We should investigate where the assets come from rather than immediately sack the official.”

In addition, the new law could prompt bosses to replace “unwanted” employees with “wanted” ones, said the deputy head of Duma’s Security Committee, Gennady Gudkov.

“One of the reasons behind corruption is officials’ uncertainty about tomorrow,” he added.

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