SAO supports the integrity training of foreign affairs officers

2018-09-14 11:00   |   Author: Gergely Szabolcs

The Ministry of Foreign Affairs and Trade has organized a two-part special integrity management and integrated risk management training for staff members in the preparation for a long-term external service on 4-10 September 2018. Speakers of the training were professionals of the Constitutional Protection Office, the Information Office, the National University of Public Service, the National Protective Service and the State Audit Office of Hungary. SAO’s representative, among other things, has pointed out to the ministry delegates that their mission is to know the integrity approach and learn integrity controls as well as to report on the efforts and achievements of Hungary on the field of the dissemination of integrity-based administrative culture, which can contribute to strengthening the country's recognition.


It is important to further train the foreign service professionals


In accordance with the National Anti-Corruption Program 2017-2018. action plan and its adoption decree 1239/2017. (IV.28.), The Ministry of Foreign Affairs and Trade organized special integrity training for its colleagues in permanent external service.


sections entitled "Roundtable discussion on National Anti-Corruption Program". The expert discussion was moderated by the Ministry's Integrity Advisor. The purpose of further training is to direct the staff of foreign service to the attention of the attendant phenomena and their professional ways of dealing with the subject.


At the roundtable discussion it has been stated that the training of foreign service professionals was of strategic importance because their position, influence and powers, their special functions, the operation and management of their representation, their network of contacts, and last but not least the information available to them, can make them a priority target in the international arena. It is imperative that professionals stationed in foreign countries have the skills to protect personal and organizational integrity and know that they are not alone. Officers can rely on a wide range of professionals and institutions well prepared to support. Employees can place their trust in the ministry's leadership and its own integrity adviser, whether it is to prevent, detect and treat a simple or complex integrity event.


Corruption risks increase vulnerability


Since 2011, the State Audit Office has been assessing the integrity level of the public sector every year. Accordingly, the SAO has extensive experience and a number of analytical data in this area, so the Ministry of Foreign Affairs and Trade has requested the President of the State Audit Office, László Domokos, to support the successful implementation of the training.


On behalf of SAO’s president Dr. Erzsébet Németh auditor director, leader of SAO’s Integrity Survey, participated in the training as the lecturer of the SAO. During the round table discussions, the director of the SAO pointed out that corruption, among other things, could be a means of accusing human beings and entire countries targeting their integrity, status quo, international position and economic stability. It is an important task for our representatives from abroad to know the integrity approach, integrity controls and the efforts that our country is doing to promote the dissemination of integrity-based administrative culture as well as to report on it at their stations.


The potential risks of integrity greatly increase the vulnerability of foreign service staff. It is important that an incident before the occurrence or incidents already threatening integrity is tackled immediately and properly, as the exponential impact of future incidents in the most vulnerable areas is likely to occur, said the Director of the SAO.


The SAO also contributes to the implementation of the National Anti-Corruption Program


On May 27, 2015 by the decree 1336/2015. the government adopted the National Anti-Corruption Program and the related measures for 2015-2018. The program has set itself the primary goal of reducing the social phenomenon of corruption, but also includes objectives such as strengthening public confidence in the functioning of public organizations or improving the international opinion on the country.


The government decree stipulates in accordance with the objectives that the public administration bodies should be able to cope with the corruption risks on which, based on the experiences of the State Audit Office, the integrity controls should be emphasized and strengthened. The decision also foresees the possibility of joining the public sector institutions in the SAO Integrity Survey and the extension of the survey to the majority state-owned companies.


In the context of the government’s decision, the State Audit Office will continue to pay particular attention to supporting the implementation of the National Anti-Corruption Program, disseminating the culture of integrity and actively contributing to any initiatives in this field.



Erzsébet Németh

supervisory manager

Szabolcs Gergely