On 13 March 2019, Mr. Sébastien Ellie, Head of the Legal and Studies Division, and Ms. Izadora Zubek, International Project Officer, met with Mr. Mamadou Aliou Bah, a guest from Guinea who was invited to France by the International Visitor Leadership Program (PIPA) of the French Ministry of Europe and Foreign Affairs. Mr. Bah is the president of the Liberal Democratic Movement (MoDeL), a political party founded in August 2018. He is also a professor at Kofi Annan University of Guinea in Conakry.

As a candidate for the 2019 parliamentary elections, Mr. Bah aims to place the moralization of political life at the heart of his election campaign. He notably pledged to strengthen the mechanisms for controlling government action. In this perspective, he expressed his interest in the action of the High Authority regarding the prevention of probity breaches and ethical misconduct in the French public sector.

The presentation focused on the various missions of the High Authority, and how they have evolved since the adoption of the laws of 11 October 2013 on transparency in public life. Questions were asked on the procedures used to monitor asset and interest declarations of public officials. Special attention was paid to cooperation with other public institutions and civil society organizations in the detection of irregularities.

Furthermore, the methods of publishing declarations were explained. The issue of balancing the need for transparency and the protection of privacy was raised. Likewise, the role of transparency in the development of an ethical culture was underlined. Besides, as a professor, Mr. Bah was particularly interested in the educational initiatives and academic partnerships of the High Authority. Finally, the definition of lobbying and its regulatory framework were mentioned.

The discussions highlighted the importance of youth, both in France and in Guinea, in promoting integrity. Indeed, young citizens of both countries share common concerns related to the exemplarity of their leaders, and the protection of the public interest.

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