Updated at 16:42,06-12-2016

Staff carrying out 'political investigation' should be reduced, Myachyslaw Gryb says

Alyaksandr Lukashenka demanded Interior Minister Ihar Shunevich to reform the Interior Ministry.

The head of state said that this must be done "calmly," "without destroying the structure," "without violating the principles of police work."

According to the former chairman of the Supreme Soviet of the 12th convocation, Militia Lieutenant General Myachyslaw Gryb, people subject to the staff reduction should be those who are engaged in "political investigation" and do not ensure the law enforcement on streets.

- Myachyslaw, how would you start to reform the Interior Ministry, if you had the task to regain people's trust in the police?

- I would have thought that it would be necessary to form a certification commission of experienced and educated people in this field and to hold an extraordinary assessment of all members of the Interior Ministry: from the bottom to the very top. The certification commission should first of all pay attention to the correct execution of the law by the police. If someone brakes the law while following orders but not laws, we should dismiss one.

Of course there would be a staff reduction as a result of the certification commission's work. Today we have too many police officers. I think the Interior Ministry staff may be reduced by a third or a quarter.

Responsibilities of the Interior Ministry should be reviewed, too. Department of Corrections should not be subject of the Interior Ministry, but transferred to a different agency of a ministry. It is wrong when the Ministry do both: catches and imprisons criminals. And it engages in their rehabilitation afterwards. This should be done by another agency, as it is all over the world, in Russia and in the CIS countries.

The most important is to prohibit the conduct the political investigation. The Interior Ministry has no legal rights to do so, but it is forced to conduct the political investigation. The Ministry has enough things to do - to fight crime.

- Lukashenko gave Ihar Shunevich the task : "We should calmly carry out this reform taking a few steps. If we are ready to take the first step in some direction, it means that we have to take it without braking the structure, without violating principles of police work." Is it possible to reform the Interior Ministry without breaking the structure and principles of its work?

- Theoretically, everything may be done. And practically, it is impossible to carry out the reform. What does it mean - to give more power to a district inspector? Is it that the inspector may fine somebody by himself and than throw people to a prison?

All authorities are the law. If we give the district inspector more authorities then nothing will change. Three-and more than a thousand people live in the district. What will he do with his powers? He does not need helpers. Everybody has enough authorities, and those authorities are the law.

Today, the Interior Ministry has no right to conduct an investigation against a senior official suspected of a criminal offense - the Interior Ministry needs a permission given by a head. If an official violates the law, then the official should be prosecuted without any authorization from the top. In a region one have to ask permission from a head of an executive committee, in a city and a district - that from head of the vertical. If things remain as they are today then any reorganization and any reform will lead to nothing.

The law is the same for everyone. If an official violates the law, the official should prosecuted by people authorized to do this. If you investigate, try, and violate the law while doing this, then an investigation will be conducted against you. And when somebody is right, and the other are even more right, nothing will change.