Journalists make common cause over property of state functionaries

The mass media can now influence the political class to a greater extent than 3-4 years ago and the efforts of the investigative journalists mustn’t be in vain. Important things happen in the media sector, while the information about the property of state functionaries disseminated by the media made the journalists to make common cause. Civil society should join the journalists in exerting pressure on the politicians so that the investigations into the cases of conflict of interests and corruption produce results, considers the head of the Association of Independent Press Petru Macovei, IPN reports.

”Within the campaign “A Clean Parliament”, we are carrying out an investigation about a company which, according to our information, belongs to an MP. A sum of 3 million lei was allocated to it from the state budget. We made a request for information to a public institution and in an hour were phoned by the chief accountant of the company about which we asked for information. She asked me why we wanted to find out information about them behind their back. It is serious when a company finds out about a request for information about them so quickly. This shows that corruption is deep-rooted in out county. The civic initiative is aimed at helping society,” said Petru Macovei.

He also said that the Association of Independent Press conducted the campaigns “Property in sight” and “Power in sight” during several years. Many media outlets followed their example. The association will soon launch the website “Clean Moldova” where there will be published journalistic materials about the integrity of persons holding public posts. “It is something serious when an investigative journalist is intimidated into giving up. Within the campaign “Public money should be accounted for” that was carried out several years ago, people furnished us with information about different stratagems used by the mayors at local level. These persons were afterward intimidated by those mayors. A director of a home of culture was dismissed because she criticized the work of the local mayor,” stated Petru Macovei.

He also said that civil society should intervene in all the cases of intimidation and pressure against investigative journalists. These actions should be monitored and made public so that the competent bodies are unable to ignore them.