Majority of Greeks see corruption in public works contracts, politics and mass media

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The majority of Greeks see corruption in public works contracts, politics and mass media and that it largely goes unpunished according to a public opinion poll by the National Transparency Authority (NTA) presented at the 1st Integrity Forum on Thursday.

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Specifically, two in three Greeks that is, 87% of those polled said the sectors most likely to involve corruption include public works & state procurements (62%), the political system (59%), and mass media (48%). These were followed by municipalities & regions (39%), the justice system (21%), provision of medical services in the National Health System (18%), construction licensing (14%), services imposing the law (11%), the public sector (9%), and business licensing (3%).

The number of people terming the issue of corruption "very important" was 67%, while 30% called it "fairly significant".

People asked "Do you believe that during emergency/natural catastrophe/pandemic times the opportunities for corruption rise?" responded as follows: Yes (80%), No (13%), and No Answer (7%).

Greek citizens were also asked to pick up to four responses on what they believed were the reasons for corruption. NTA tabulated the results as follows: Corrupt individuals not being punished (85%), parties & clientelism (73%), lack of transparency in state organizations (43%), government indifference (40%), absence of a clear legal/regulatory frame (34%), inadequate use of new technologies in state/citizen relations (27%), human greed (25%), ignorance of citizens' rights before public administration (20%).

"Generally speaking," 87% of those asked believe that corruption is rarely punished or never, another 10% thought very often/often, and the remaining 3% chose "Don't know/No answer".

Asked "What would prevent you from reporting corruption?", people answered as follows: "No protection for whistleblowers" (50%), "It's hard to prove what happened" (22%), "I'm afraid of repercussions" (17%), "It would make no difference" (6%), "Everyone knows about these affairs and nobody does anything" (6%).

The Authority also asked participants to name up to three institutions they would trust the most if they wanted to go ahead and report incidents of corruption. Their answers were: the National Transparency Authority (65%), justice/courts/prosecutors (51%), the Ombudsman (49%), relevant European Union services (33%), police (19%), mass media (10%), NGOs (4%), unions (2%), Citizen Services Centers (or KEP, 1%), MPs/mayors/city councils (1%).

Asked whether they knew of the NTA, a total of 78% of those questioned said yes, and the remaining 22% said no.

Finally, NTA asked those questioned on their impressions after being informed of the agency's actions. A total of 71% said they were "rather positive" about its actions, 4% were "rather negative", another 24% said "Neither", and the remaining 1% said Don't know/No Answer.