02.05.2013 The telephone hotlines for reporting bribery and corruption are “dead”. Almost no one reports cases of corruption on telephone numbers especially opened in state institutions for that purpose. It is not known how many cases of suspected corruption have been reported on the special hotline 199 which was promoted as a national hotline for reporting bribery and corruption back in 2007. The officials in the Ministry of Interior, which operates the hotline and where you can report any case of corruption, claim that generally speaking, the number of calls has been reduced, but they do not specify how many of them have been counted as reported cases of bribe and corruption.
The survey, conducted by the Center for Investigative Journalism SCOOP Macedonia, showed that there is a weak interest in such reporting, which, on the other hand, is more common on the hotlines run by the NGOs. Experts explain this with the fact that citizens do not trust institutions and therefore do not report corruption, which does not mean it is not present.
No complaint of bribery or corruption has so far been registered in the call center of the Ministry of Labor and Social Policy, which has been operating since 2008. On the website of the Ministry it can be seen that there is a special corruption hotline, but so far it has been used by citizens to report all kinds of cases, but not corruption.
“People have used the hotline 15133 that we have in the Ministry in ignorance, for a variety of complaints. Most often people report irregularities in the work of enterprises, violation of workers’ rights or we have had calls referring to rights related to the field of social policy. Now we have more specialized hotlines for certain complaints and the frequency of calls on this hotline has been reduced”, says Zaklina Velickovska from MLSP. She claims that the calls are anonymous and there is a special procedure for reporting, as well as persons specifically authorized to act in case of reporting corruption.