Conflict of interest and corruptionat a local level
The Survey identifies a negative perception as to the level of transparency exhibited by the local government units. During the period between the years 2014 and 2015, a decline in the perception regarding the transparency of the municipal administration has been recognized. Half of the citizens consider the municipal tenders to have been awarded unfairly, whereas one fourth of the respondents are not sufficiently familiarized with the tendering process. One fourth of the respondents strongly agree with the following statement: “The companies close to the municipal authorities always take precedence in the tendering process”. Nearly two thirds of all the respondents consider the recruitments process in the municipal administrations to be open and accessible exclusively to those individuals close to the municipal governing party. Certain increase in the number of corrupt transactions is evident between the years 2014 and 2015 as well reduced resistance to the pressure of corruption. Concurrently, a certain portion of the administration has improved integrity by rejecting offers of bribe. In 2015, 115 076 transactions were registered of bribe being requested and received in the municipalities, which represents a significant increase in comparison to the year 2014, for which 72 935 such transactions were projected. Decline in the potential to report corruption to the relevant institutions and other stakeholders was also registered. In 2015, in comparison to 2014, the percentage of citizens who would not report corruption has grown. Every fourth citizen would not report corruption at all, whereas diminished confidence is registered in almost all of the competent institutions. Almost half of the respondents strongly agree that in Macedonia no one will get employment unless is a member of a political party; more than half of the respondents strongly agree that the state is the agent responsible for providing employment to its citizens, whereas 4 out of 10 individuals strongly agree that in Macedonia, the practice “quid pro quo” is a widely developed phenomenon.