Essay: Political Corruption in Czech Republic

In the whole region the situation with political corruption is quite similar. Many countries have joined European Union and under the strict directions are struggling against the political corruption. In Czech Republic the situation is pretty similar to Poland. The years under the communist oppression did not play for advantage now. A number of remnants of communist era are still left. One of them is the attitude to the private property and privatization: “Privatization programs have fed corruption throughout the region. These programs are now almost complete in the more advanced countries, such as the Czech Republic. But in many countries of the former Soviet bloc the governments have used privatization as an opportunity to distribute favours to their friends. Thus control of the main economic assets has remained in the hands of the few. Furthermore, the new owners who acquired companies via patronage have tended to be very slow to restructure them; many such enterprises have had to be bailed out by the friendly state. This problem put a great strain on the Czech budget in the mid-1990s, and it is arguable that numerous irregularities in the Czech privatization program effectively brought down the government of Václav Klaus in 1997” (Liz Barret 2000). Privatization is really serious problem and so called ‘soviet mental understanding’ caused within the Czech republic a number of contradictory cases and the growth of corruption was observed. The investigators of this question consider that the main reasons of political corruption in Czech Republic are its communist part and
Relatively small political area, where everyone knows each other: “In terms of political corruption I would say that there are a few aspects. One, the Czech Republic is a relatively small country; people know each other, especially in this political sphere where there are a few hundred people who deal with it. The other aspect is that there is a very strong and an increasing impact of political parties on everyday life of society; namely, regarding the distribution of public funds or promotion of people to certain positions in public administration or in state-owned companies. This is something which moves the Czech Republic towards countries like Italy or earlier to Austria, where political parties basically divided their spheres of influence. Another reason for corruption in the Czech Republic is the country’s communist past. The communist system didn’t provide clear and fair rules for competition. In the absence of a market economy, people looked for other ways to get scarce commodities. In this way, a system of providing mutual favours developed. Political Analyst Milan Znoj says that the fast-paced political changes since communism fell have also had a negative impact on the general way of thinking here.” (Martin Mikule, 2004), “Corruption undermines modern citizenship, since it directly violates the principle of universality, undermines the foundations of a legal state, and replaces public authority with private domination. Other problems, such as incompetence or intractable political disputes, may also undermine effective citizenship. However, they are more amenable to solutions via the political process, since they do not undermine that process as such. Corruption by contrast strikes at the very root of politics” (Quentin Reed, 1996). It is essential that undergoing such significant changes the country has fallen to certain economical and political crisis. But the rate of the country within the statistic grows as it provides numerous measures to improve the situation in political corruption area. Joining to Euro Union is a significant step to lessening the corruption level. But still Czech Republic is considered to be seriously influenced by political corruption. The situation within this area is considered to be one of the worst in European Union.

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