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Paraguay

In law
45
In practice
28

In Paraguay, direct public funding is provided for parties. The distribution and allocation of that funding, however, is not entirely transparent. Non-financial state resources were regularly abused during the 2013 campaign, but indirect public funding in the form of free advertising slots was equitably distributed to parties and eligible candidates. Limits cap the amount that individual donors, corporations, foreign sources, and third parties can give to parties, while there are no restrictions on contributions to candidates. Campaign spending is capped only for parties, though in practice, parties employed a variety of strategies to circumvent those caps during the 2013 elections. In terms of reporting requirements, parties are required to submit detailed reports during and outside of campaign periods. In practice, reports often lack the requisite detail, and very little political finance information is made available to the public. Third party actors engaging in partisan campaign activities, especially nonprofits, are present in Paraguay, but their independent expenditures and contributions are not regulated. The Electoral Justice (TSJE) oversees political finance. In practice, appointments to the TSJE are not definitively merit-based, and appointees are not independent of other branches of government. The TSJE did not perform any audits or investigations after the 2013 campaign, nor did it sanction potential violators. Because the TSJE is politically compromised, enforcement is fairly weak.

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    Direct and Indirect Public Funding

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    46
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      Direct Public Funding
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        1
        Score
        MODERATE
        In law, there is direct public funding for electoral campaigns.More about indicator

        In law, there is direct public funding for national level electoral campaigns, but only for political parties, movements or alliances. Art. 276 of the Political Finance Law, which modifies art. 276 of the Paraguayan Electoral Code, states that “the state will subsidise the expenses of electoral campaign activities of parties, political movements and alliances the equivalent of 15% of a daily minimum wage((equivalent to roughly $2.50 USD) for different activities not specified for each valid vote obtained to Congress in the last elections“. The article specifies that the corresponding amounts shall be given once parties, political movements and alliances‘ accountability reports and compliance with the control mechanism that the law provides have been duly verified.

        No public funding is provided for presidential or vice-presidential candidates.

        Scoring Criteria

        A YES score is earned where there is direct public funding for both political parties and individual candidates to campaign. A 100 also applies where only one of the two actors can be elected and, therefore, only one is entitled to direct public funding.

        A MODERATE score is earned where per law only one of the two actors (either political parties or individual candidates) is allocated direct public funding to campaign, even though both can be elected.

        A NO score is earned where no such law exists.

        Sources

        Law No 4743/12 of Political Finance. 2012. Art. 276. http://www.bacn.gov.py/MTE5OA==&ley-n-4743

        Law No 834/96 of the Paraguayan Electoral Code. 1996. Art. 276. http://www.semillas.org.py/wp-content/uploads/2013/03/Texto-C%C3%B3digo-Electoral-con-Ley-de-Financiamiento-compilado.pdf

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        2
        Score
        MODERATE
        In law, there is a transparent and equitable mechanism to determine direct public funding for electoral campaigns.More about indicator

        Art. 3 of the Political Finance Law, which modifies art. 276 of the Paraguayan Electoral Code, states that “the state will subsidise the expenses of electoral campaign activities of parties, political movements and alliances the equivalent of 15% of a daily minimum wage (equivalent to roughly $2.50 USD) for different activities not specified for each valid vote obtained to Congress“ in the last national level elections. No reference is made to individual candidates (president and vice-president). The article specifies that the corresponding amounts shall be given once parties, political movements and alliances‘ accountability reports and compliance with the control mechanism that the law provides have been duly verified.

        In regards to the control mechanism, art. 3 of the Political Finance Law, which modifies art. 281 of the Paraguayan Electoral Code establishes that in order to receive direct public funding, campaign managers must keep an account balance of all received funds with the origins of these as well as the expenses. Supporting documentation must accompany this registry. The article specifies that “forty days after election day, [parties, political movements and alliances] must turn in documentation of funds‘ inflow and outflow to the Electoral Tribunal, along with an annexed report of all contributions or donations received detailing their origins and amounts“. After this, the Office of Comptroller General will proceed to audit the accountabilities. Parties, alliances and political movements will have ten days to make any requested clarifications from the Comptroller Office, which will ultimately determine approval or rejection of their accountability reports.

        Scoring Criteria

        A YES score is earned where: 1) direct public funding for political parties and individual candidates' electoral campaigns is allocated through a clearly defined calculation mechanism that is transparent and equitable, and 2) there are clearly defined eligibility criteria.

        A MODERATE score is earned where direct public funding for political party and individual candidates' electoral campaigns is allocated through a clearly defined calculation mechanism that is transparent and equitable, but eligibility criteria are not clearly defined.

        A NO score is earned where no such law exists.

        Sources

        Law No 4743 of Political Finance. 2012. Arts. 3. http://www.bacn.gov.py/MTE5OA==&ley-n-4743

        Law No 834/96 of the Paraguayan Electoral Code. 1996. Art. 276. http://www.semillas.org.py/wp-content/uploads/2013/03/Texto-C%C3%B3digo-Electoral-con-Ley-de-Financiamiento-compilado.pdf

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        3
        Score
        50
        In practice, to what extent is the mechanism to determine direct public funding for electoral campaigns transparent, equitable and consistently applied?More about indicator

        In practice, the allocation mechanism that determines political campaign funds for parties is unclear and is not readily available to the public for scrutiny. The two entities in charge of this, the Ministry of Finance and the Electoral Justice High Court (TSJE), rarely publish how they calculate the sums that parties receive. According to Carmen Romero, people learn about the aggregate amounts that are allocated. However, it is difficult to know whether those amounts correspond or not with what the law stipulates (July 14, 2014).

        Loose control mechanisms of parties‘ accountability reports adds to the issue of transparency. In the words of Romero, “the accountability [process] is a fast check. Nobody verifies whether the information is truthful or not“ (July 14, 2014). Therefore, it becomes more difficult to trust that what parties are receiving is in fact what they should get. “The money is turned in after a timid control [process] from TSJE“, concludes a news report. (ABC Color, April 19, 2014).

        The criteria for eligibility are usually applied, but exceptions exist. Romero has commented that the political movement she belongs to - Kuña Pyrenda - has received funds, even though little did they know whether they would be eligible or not (July 14, 2014). The coalition Frente Guasu has publicly complained that TSJE did not provide them the electoral campaign funds that they deserve according to law, thus accusing the entity of discrimination (La Nación, May 31, 2014). According to Ricardo Canese, the two major parties, ANR (Colorado Party) and PLRA (Liberal Party) had received their funds in a timely manner. In his view, they were the only ones who had to deal with the issue (July 15, 2014).

        Scoring Criteria

        A 100 score is earned where: 1) electoral campaigns allocations are always defined through a clearly defined transparent and equitable calculation mechanism, and 2) the defined eligibility criteria are applied consistently.

        A 50 score is earned where: 1) electoral campaign allocations are usually defined through a clearly defined transparent and equitable calculation mechanism but exceptions exist, or 2) the eligibility criteria are usually applied but exceptions exist.

        A 0 score is earned where: 1) political campaign allocations are rarely or never defined through a clearly defined transparent and equitable calculation mechanism, or 2) the defined eligibility criteria are rarely applied.

        Sources

        Ricardo Canese, Parliamentarian for Mercosur, Frente Guasu Headquarters, Asunción, Personal Interview. July 15, 2014.

        Carmen Romero, Fonacide‘s Executive Director, Secretaría Técnica de Planificación Headquarters, Personal Interview. July 14, 2014.

        “TSJE entregó Gs. 18.000 millones a los partidos en concepto de subsidios y aportes“. ABC Color. April 19, 2014. http://www.abc.com.py/edicion-impresa/politica/tsje-entrego-g-18000-millones-a-los-partidos-en-subsidios-y-aportes-1236480.html

        “Frente Guasu reclama al TSJE el pago de más de Gs. 1000 millones“. La Nación. May 31, 2014. http://www.lanacion.com.py/articulo/166487--frente-guasu-reclama-al-tsje-el-pago-de-mas-de-g-1000-millones.html

        “Justicia Electoral paga subsidio al Frente Guasu“. ABC Color. June 14, 2014. http://www.abc.com.py/edicion-impresa/politica/justicia-electoral-paga-subsidio-al-frente-guasu-1255462.html

        "Partidos recibieron G. 10 mil millones de subsidio y aporte." Ultima Hora. July 13, 2014. http://www.ultimahora.com/partidos-recibieron-g-10-mil-millones-subsidio-y-aporte-n811589.html

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        25
        In practice, to what extent does the entity in charge of public funding make disbursement information publicly available?More about indicator

        Information about disbursement of funds to political parties is often incomplete and not available on the Internet. Most of the time, citizens learn about these disbursements through the press, sometimes three or four months after the disbursement agencies - the Ministry of Finance and Electoral Justice High Court (TSJE) - provided parties with the electoral funds, as news reports from the period of study testify (April 19 /July 13, 2014). These reports only mention the dates and the total sums that each party or political movement has received, without any more details as to how those sums were calculated.

        Another issue at hand is that TSJE has not released the electoral funds all at once. Instead, it has done so at different times. This issue has made it more complicated to monitor disbursements. For instance, the entity has published on its website an account of the first disbursement (November 22, 2013). However, they have failed to publish when they disbursed the remaining funds. It is also important to note that on the only news evidence from TSJE about the first disbursement, all the information that is available relates to the total sums that each party received.

        In regards to citizens obtaining this type of information, there are no clear mechanisms in place. Paulo González Paciello, coordinator of the Project Mirador Electoral (Electoral Watch) from Semillas para la Democracia, explains: “The information is not on the Internet...When we called TSJE, they put us through several departments. Then they told us that we have to reach [the Ministry of] Finance to get the information. After we insisted, they told us to file a formal request letter to TSJE, and follow up on that“ (July 16, 2014).

        The researcher obtained the disbursement information two days after requesting it via a phone call to the press department at TSJE (August 6, 2014). The reports were sent via email. They contain the amounts that were allocated to parties as electoral subsides. One of the documents refers to the amounts disbursed to the Frente Guasu coalition, with details of the amounts provided as electoral subsides and annual contributions and the disbursement dates.

        Scoring Criteria

        A 100 score is earned where: 1) complete information on the disbursements is published less than a month after disbursement, and 2) the information is available on the Internet for free or in hard copy at photocopying cost.

        A 50 score is earned where: 1) the information published is incomplete or published more than two months after disbursement, or 2) obtaining the information costs more than photocopying.

        A 0 score is earned where: 1) disbursement information is published more than four months after disbursement, or 2) no disbursement information is published or released upon request.

        Sources

        Paulo Gonzalez Paciello, Coordinator of Proyecto Mirador Electoral, NGO Semillas para la Democracia Office, Asunción, Personal Interview. July 16, 2014.

        Carmen Romero, Fonacide‘s Executive Director, Secretatía Técnica de Planificación Headquarters, Personal Interview. July 14, 2014.

        “Partidos políticos recibieron el primer pago parcial del subsidio electoral de las elecciones generales del 2013“. Justicia Electroal. November 22, 2013. http://www.tsje.gov.py/gacetilla/3598-partidos-politicos-recibieron-el-primer-pago-parcial-del-subsidio-electoral-de-las-elecciones-generales-2013.html

        “TSJE entregó Gs. 18.000 millones a los partidos en concepto de subsidios y aportes“. ABC Color. April 19, 2014. http://www.abc.com.py/edicion-impresa/politica/tsje-entrego-g-18000-millones-a-los-partidos-en-subsidios-y-aportes-1236480.html

        “Partidos recibieron Gs. 10 mil millones de subsidio y aporte“. Ultima Hora. July 13, 2014. http://www.ultimahora.com/partidos-recibieron-g-10-mil-millones-subsidio-y-aporte-n811589.html

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      Indirect Public Funding
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        5
        Score
        NO
        In law, use of state resources in favor of or against political parties and individual candidates is prohibited.More about indicator

        Art. 3 of the Political Finance Law, which modifies art. 282 of the Paraguayan Electoral Code, states that for the purpose of collecting funds for electoral campaigns,“parties, political movements and alliances are banned from: a) receiving contributions from any branch of the public administration, autonomous decentralised entities, mixed-economy companies, bi-national entities as well as firms licensees of public works or services, or that deal with gambling games“.

        The law does not mention individual candidates, and there's no particular ban on the use of non-financial resources controlled by the state.

        Scoring Criteria

        A YES score is earned where there is an explicit ban on the use of state resources in favor of or against political parties and individual candidates. A YES is also earned where there are clearly defined exceptions, which are accessible to all actors equally.

        A MODERATE score is earned where an explicit ban exists but it only applies to one of the two actors, even though both can be elected. A NO score is earned where no such law exists.

        A NO score is also earned where the law exists, but allows discretionary exceptions.

        Sources

        Law No 4743 of Political Finance. Art. 3. 2012. http://www.bacn.gov.py/MTE5OA==&ley-n-4743

        Law No. 834/96 of the Paraguayan Electoral Code. Art. 282. 1996. http://www.semillas.org.py/wp-content/uploads/2013/03/Texto-C%C3%B3digo-Electoral-con-Ley-de-Financiamiento-compilado.pdf

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        6
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        0
        In practice, to what extent are no state resources used in favor of or against political parties and individual candidates' electoral campaigns?More about indicator

        Evidence shows that state resources have been used for electoral purposes in Paraguay, favouring some political parties over others. For instance, news reports point at the use of state vehicles before and during election day carrying propaganda of one of the contending political alliances, Alianza Paraguay Alegre, made up of Partido Liberal Radical Auténtico (PLRA) and other minor parties (Ultima Hora, April 20, 2013/ ABC Color, April 21, 2013). Also, newspapers accused the Alliance‘s presidential candidate, Efraín Alegre, of using financial resources from a state entity in order to cover the airplane costs of his electoral campaign (ABC Color, April 7, 2013).

        In a similar manner, the mayor of Ciudad del Este, the second biggest city of the country, held a public meeting with municipal workers to urge them to vote for the Colorado Party‘s candidate, Horacio Cartes, inside the headquarters of the municipality. During the meeting, the mayor asked them to support the Party on election day and promised “several rewards“ in the event that Cartes won the Presidency. The Colorado‘s party campaign manager for the province of Alto Paraná and other prominent political figures took part in this activity as well (ABC Color, April 17, 2013).

        One of the most notorious cases of use of state resources to solicit electoral support took place one month before the elections, involving Alianza Paraguay Alegre and the political movement UNACE. According to Ricardo Canese, former campaign manager for the Frente Guasu coalition and current elected Parliamentarian for Mercosur - Parlasur-, and several news reports, the Instituto de Desarrollo Rural y de la Tierra INDERT, which is the public office in charge of all affairs regarding rural development, bought a piece of land in the countryside for US$ 13 million as part of a scheme that would benefit the presidential candidate Efraín Alegre. Back then, INDERT was headed by Ignacio Ortigoza from PLRA, Alegre‘s party and the one in power at the time. The issues with the purchase were as follows:

        -Congress had already rejected the purchase in 2002 because the land was found to be unsuitable for agricultural purposes. -The purchase was done on a holiday, quite rare to proceed with such a major financial transaction. -The land belonged to the father of Jorge Oviedo Matto, then president of the Senate chamber and a prominent figure within UNACE. -The purchase took place at the same time that PLRA was seeking UNACEs political support for its presidential candidatee. Negotiations were ongoing at the time of the purchase. -Each hectare of land was valued at US$ 1800. However, INDERT paid the sum US$ 2500.

        In spite of the controversy, UNACE ended up providing its political support to Alianza Paraguay Alegre‘s presidential candidate, further fuelling speculation that the illicit transaction was undertaken for electoral purposes (ABC Color, April 2, 2013).

        Scoring Criteria

        A 100 score is earned where there is no evidence of authorities using state resources in favor of or against political parties and individual candidates. A 100 is also earned where there are clearly defined exceptions and are equally accessible to all actors.

        A 50 score is earned where: 1) documented evidence indicates occasional use of state resources in favor of or against political parties and individual candidates, or 2) clearly defined exceptions are not equally accessible to all actors.

        A 0 score is earned where documented evidence indicates regular use of state resources in favor of or against certain political parties and individual candidates.

        Sources

        Ricardo Canese, Parliamentarian for Mercosur. Frente Guasu headquarters, Asunción, Personal Interview. July 15, 2014.

        “Entidad Yacyreta pagó vuelo proselitista de Efraín Alegre“, by Nancy Espinola. ABC Color. April 7, 2013. http://www.abc.com.py/edicion-impresa/politica/entidad-yacyreta-pago-vuelo-proselitista-de-efrain-alegre-557775.html

        “Municipalidad de CDE convertida en seccional“, by Redacción Regional. ABC Color. April 17, 2013. http://www.abc.com.py/nacionales/municipalidad-de-cde-convertida-en-seccional-562008.html

        “Denuncian uso irregular de vehículo de la ANDE“. ABC Color. April 21, 2013. http://www.abc.com.py/nacionales/denuncian-uso-irregular-de-vehiculo-de-la-ande-563436.html

        “Más irregularidades con vehículos de EBY“. Ultima Hora. April 20, 2013. http://www.ultimahora.com/mas-irregularidades-vehiculos-eby-n615140.html

        “Indert pagó Gs. 46.000 millones por tierras que estarían vinculadas a Oviedo Matto“, by Nancy Espínola. ABC Color. April 2, 2013. http://www.abc.com.py/edicion-impresa/politica/indert-pago-g-46000-millones-por-tierras-que-estarian-vinculadas-a-oviedo-matto-555786.html

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        7
        Score
        YES
        In law, political parties and individual candidates have free or subsidized access to equitable air time for electoral campaigns?More about indicator

        Art. 302 grants free access to air time to all parties, political movements and alliances that are registered and running for elections based on the principle of equality. The article states that “in order to foster a process of democratization in the country and civic education of the Paraguayan people, all massive media outlets - oral and televised - will provide three percent of their air time to spread parties, political movements and alliances‘ programs that run for elections, ten days prior to the closure of the electoral campaign. In the same manner, newspapers shall provide one page per edition“. The law covers both presidential and legislative elections.

        Scoring Criteria

        A YES score is earned where: 1) free or subsidized access to air time for electoral campaigns is granted in a transparent, equitable way, and 2) there are clearly defined eligibility criteria.

        A MODERATE score is earned where free or subsidized access to air time for electoral campaigns is granted in a transparent, equitable way, but eligibility criteria are not clearly defined.

        A NO score is earned where no such law exists.

        Sources

        Law 834/96 of the Paraguayan Electoral Code. Art. 302. 1996. http://www.semillas.org.py/wp-content/uploads/2013/03/Texto-C%C3%B3digo-Electoral-con-Ley-de-Financiamiento-compilado.pdf

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        8
        Score
        100
        In practice, to what extent is free or subsidized access to air time provided in a transparent, equitable way to political parties and individual candidates for electoral campaigns?More about indicator

        In general, free access to air time is provided in a transparent and equitable way to candidates in order to promote their platforms. There have been no reports or complaints that the law has not been applied in the last national level elections. In fact, the public broadcasting station urged parties to make written requests to make use of the free air time that by law they should have access to (April 3, 2013).

        Some issues remain around the mechanism that allocates free air time according to Carmen Romero, who explains that “the law is clear. However, it does not say anything about the airtime schedule. Hence, ads are aired very late at night sometimes, which is the same as not being on TV“ (July 14, 2014). In the view of Canese, a former campaign official for the Frente Guasu Alliance, says that the amount of free airtime is insignificant in comparison to the amount of time and resources that an electoral campaign demands in terms of propaganda (July 15, 2014).

        Scoring Criteria

        A 100 score is earned where: 1) free or subsidized access to media advertising is always provided in a transparent and equitable way, and 2) the defined eligibility criteria are applied consistently.

        A 50 score is earned where: 1) free or subsidized access to media advertising is usually provided in a transparent and equitable way, but exceptions exist, or 2) the eligibility criteria are not always applied.

        A 0 score is earned where: 1) there's rarely free or subsidized access to air time for political campaign, and 2) access exists but is not provided in a transparent, equitable way.

        Sources

        Ricardo Canese, Parlamentarian for Mercosur, Frente Guasu Headquarters, July 15, 2014, Asunción / In person interview

        Carmen Romero, Director at FONACIDE, Secretaria Técnica de Planificación Headquarters, July 14, 2014, Asunción / In person interview

        “Publicidad de partidos políticos en los medios“. Dirección General de Comunicación Estratégica. April 3, 2013.http://compartiendoinformaciones-sicom.blogspot.com/2013/04/publicidad-de-partidos-politicos-en-los.html

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    Contribution and Expenditure Restrictions

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      General Rules on Electoral Campaign Contributions
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        9
        Score
        NO
        In law, cash contributions are banned.More about indicator

        Cash contributions are permissible, in light of what art. 278 of the Political Finance Law establishes, which states in section C that each party, political movement and alliance that run for general elections is obliged to “open an unique account in a local financial institution, where all collected funds, private or public, will be deposited“. Collected funds can take the form of cash.

        There are no differences in the regulation of cash contributions for presidential or legislative elections.

        Scoring Criteria

        A YES score is earned where cash contributions are banned and all financial contributions must be made via the banking system.

        A MODERATE score is earned where cash contributions are allowed up to a maximum limit, regardless of the limit.

        A NO score is earned where no such law exists.

        Sources

        Law No 4743 of Political Finance. Art. 3. 2012. http://www.bacn.gov.py/MTE5OA==&ley-n-4743

        Law No834/96 of the Paraguayan Electoral Code. Art. 278. 1996. http://www.semillas.org.py/wp-content/uploads/2013/03/Texto-C%C3%B3digo-Electoral-con-Ley-de-Financiamiento-compilado.pdf

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        10
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        NO
        In law, there is a ban on anonymous contributions.More about indicator

        Art. 3 of the Political Finance Law, which modifies art. 282 of the Paraguayan Electoral Code, bans anonymous contributions to political parties, movements and alliances that run for national elections. However, it establishes the following exception: “When collecting funds for electoral campaigns, political parties, movements and alliances are entirely banned from: receiving anonymous contributions or donations, with the exception of those arising from legal proselytistic activities of political parties, that are massive and circumstantial in nature, with the goal of raising revenues to finance electoral campaigns - as long as the amounts raised do not exceed the equivalent of 10,000 (ten thousand) minimum wages for non-specified activities“. Currently, the maximum threshold that the law refers to is equal to US$ 160,919 approximately.

        Scoring Criteria

        A YES score is earned where the law stipulates that anonymous contributions are banned.

        A MODERATE score is earned where the ban exists, but it applies only to one actor (whether political parties or individual candidates). A MODERATE score is also earned where small anonymous donations are allowed up to a maximum threshold equal to or less than the equivalent to US$300.

        A NO score is earned where no such law exists.

        Sources

        Law No 4743 of Political Finance. Art. 3. 2012. http://www.bacn.gov.py/MTE5OA==&ley-n-4743

        Law No. 834/96 of the Paraguayan Electoral Code. Art. 282. 1996. http://www.semillas.org.py/wp-content/uploads/2013/03/Texto-C%C3%B3digo-Electoral-con-Ley-de-Financiamiento-compilado.pdf

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        11
        Score
        MODERATE
        In law, in-kind donations to political parties and individual candidates must be reported.More about indicator

        Neither the Paraguayan Electoral Code nor the Political Finance Law refer to in-kind contributions for electoral campaigns and the need to explicitly report these to the authorities. However, the Paraguayan Electoral Code does in fact establish regulations for in-kind goods in general in arts. 63 and 74. The first article states that “Political parties will have to keep in their accountability registry ordinary and extraordinary inflows of funds, goods and in-kind, including details such as date, origin and name of the receiving agency. In the same way should outflows be registered. Art. 74 provides as follows: “Imports of machinery, equipment, materials for graphic printing or audiovisual production with the items required for usage, as well as machinery and IT or office equipment, which are needed for party work, will be exempt from custom duties and any additional. Those goods will be incorporated in the party or political movement‘s accountability report as an asset“. Because accountability reports must then be submitted to the TSJE, in-kind contributions to political parties should, in law, be reported.

        No such requirement exists for individual candidates.

        Scoring Criteria

        A YES score is earned where all in-kind donations must be reported to the oversight authority.

        A MODERATE score is also earned if the requirement to report such information exists, but applies only to one actor (whether political parties or individual candidates).

        A NO score is earned where no such law exists.

        Sources

        Law No. 834/96 of the Paraguayan Electoral Code. 1996. http://www.semillas.org.py/wp-content/uploads/2013/03/Texto-C%C3%B3digo-Electoral-con-Ley-de-Financiamiento-compilado.pdf''

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        12
        Score
        NO
        In law, loans to political parties and individual candidates must be reported.More about indicator

        No such law exists.

        Scoring Criteria

        A YES score is earned where all loans must be reported to the oversight authority.

        A MODERATE score is earned where loans must be reported, but the requirement applies only to one actor (whether political parties or individual candidates).

        A NO score is earned where no such law exists.

        Sources

        Law No 834/96 of the Paraguayan Electoral Code. 1996. http://www.semillas.org.py/wp-content/uploads/2013/03/Texto-C%C3%B3digo-Electoral-con-Ley-de-Financiamiento-compilado.pdf

        Law No 4743/12 of Political Finance. 2012. http://www.bacn.gov.py/MTE5OA==&ley-n-4743

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      Limits on Contributions and Expenditures during Electoral Campaign Periods
      More about category
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        13
        Score
        MODERATE
        In law, contributions from individuals are limited to a maximum amount.More about indicator

        Art. 3 of the Political Finance Law, which modifies art. 282 of the Paraguayan Electoral Code, establishes that in collecting funds for a electoral campaign, parties, political movements and alliances are banned from: “receiving contributions or donations from individuals that exceed the equivalent of 7000 (seven thousand) minimum wages for non-specified diverse activities, be them from physical persons or firms“. The threshold equals to US$ 112,643 approximately.

        Art. 3 of the Political Finance Law, which also modifies art. 68 of the Paraguayan Electoral Code, states that parties or political movements cannot accept or receive directly or indirectly “anonymous contributions or donations from individuals which exceed the equivalent of 5000 (five thousand) minimum wages for non-specified activities for each financial yearend, be them from natural or legal persons“.

        No limit on individual contributions to candidates exists.

        Scoring Criteria

        A YES score is earned where: 1) individuals may not contribute more than a maximum amount established by the law.

        A MODERATE score is earned where a maximum amount exists, but it applies only to contributions for one actor (whether political parties or individual candidates). A MODERATE score is also earned where individuals are forbidden from making any contribution.

        A NO score is earned where no such law exists.

        Sources

        Law No 4743/12 of Political Finance. Arts. 3/68. 2012.http://www.bacn.gov.py/MTE5OA==&ley-n-4743

        Law 834/96 of the Paraguayan Electoral Code. Arts. 68/282. 1996.http://www.semillas.org.py/wp-content/uploads/2013/03/Texto-C%C3%B3digo-Electoral-con-Ley-de-Financiamiento-compilado.pdf

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        14
        Score
        MODERATE
        In law, contributions from corporations are limited to a maximum amount.More about indicator

        Corporations can contribute to political parties, movements and alliances up to a maximum amount in Paraguay. Art. 3 of the Political Finance Law, which modifies art. 282 of the Paraguayan Electoral Code, establishes that in collecting funds for a electoral campaign, parties, political movements and alliances are banned from: “receiving contributions or donations from individuals that exceed the equivalent of 7000 (seven thousand) minimum wages for non-specified diverse activities, be them from physical persons or firms“. The threshold is equal to US$ 112,643 approximately. The same article also bans them from “receiving contributions or donations from [...] mixed-economy companies [...] as well as firms licensees of public works or services [...]“.

        No explicit limit on corporate donations to candidates exists.

        Scoring Criteria

        A YES score is earned where: 1) corporations may not contribute more than a maximum amount established by the law.

        A MODERATE score is earned where a maximum amount or ban exists, but it applies only to contributions for one actor (whether political parties or individual candidates). A MODERATE score is also earned where corporations are forbidden from making any contribution.

        A NO score is earned where no such law exists.

        Sources

        Law 4743/12 of Political Finance. Art. 3. 2012.http://www.bacn.gov.py/MTE5OA==&ley-n-4743

        Law 834/96 of the Paraguayan Electoral Code. Art. 282. 1996. http://www.semillas.org.py/wp-content/uploads/2013/03/Texto-C%C3%B3digo-Electoral-con-Ley-de-Financiamiento-compilado.pdf

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        15
        Score
        MODERATE
        In law, contributions from foreign sources are banned.More about indicator

        A ban exists but it applies only to political parties, movements or alliances. Art. 3 of the Political Finance Law, which modifies art. 282 of the Paraguayan Electoral Code, states that in collecting funds for an electoral campaign at the national level, parties, movements or alliances are banned from “receiving contributions from foreign governments, public entities or natural or legal persons, unless they are natural or legal persons that reside in the country“.

        Also, art. 3, which modifies art. 68 of the Paraguayan Electoral Code, states that parties or political movements cannot accept or receive directly or indirectly “contributions or donations from foreign entities such as governments, foundations, parties, political movements, institutions and natural or legal persons, unless the natural or legal persons reside in the country and the purpose of the contribution or donation is to cover the costs of the party or political movement‘s activities related to training or research“.

        Scoring Criteria

        A YES score is earned where it is forbidden for political parties and individual candidates to receive contributions (financial or in-kind) from foreign sources.

        A MODERATE score is earned where: 1) the ban exists but it applies only to one actor (whether political parties or individual candidates), or 2) contributions from foreign sources are allowed to a maximum amount.

        A NO score is earned where no such law exists.

        Sources

        Law 4743/12 of Political Finance. Art. 3. 2012.http://www.bacn.gov.py/MTE5OA==&ley-n-4743

        Law 834/96 of the Paraguayan Electoral Code. Art. 282. 1996.http://www.semillas.org.py/wp-content/uploads/2013/03/Texto-C%C3%B3digo-Electoral-con-Ley-de-Financiamiento-compilado.pdf

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        16
        Score
        MODERATE
        In law, contributions from third-party actors (unions, foundations, think tanks, political action committees, etc.) are limited to a maximum amount or banned.More about indicator

        A ban exists by law but only for a majority of third party actors, and it refers to contributions for political parties specifically. Art. 3 of the Political Finance Law, which modifies art. 282 of the Paraguayan Electoral Code, states that in collecting funds for an electoral campaign, parties, political movements and alliances are banned from “receiving contributions from unions, business associations or entities that represent any other economic sector“.

        Art. 3 also modifies art. 68 of the Paraguayan Electoral Code, stating that parties or political movements cannot accept or receive directly or indirectly “contributions or donations from employers‘ associations or trade unions“.

        Scoring Criteria

        A YES score is earned where: 1) third-party actors may not contribute more than a maximum amount established by the law, or 2) are forbidden from making any contribution.

        A MODERATE score is earned where: 1) the maximum amount or ban exists only for the majority of third-party actors, but not all, or 2) the maximum amount or ban exists, but applies only to contributions for either political parties or individual candidates.

        A NO score is earned where no such law exists.

        Sources

        Law 4743/12 of Political Finance. Art. 3. 2012. http://www.bacn.gov.py/MTE5OA==&ley-n-4743

        Law 834/96 of the Paraguayan Electoral Code. Art. 282/68. 1996. http://www.semillas.org.py/wp-content/uploads/2013/03/Texto-C%C3%B3digo-Electoral-con-Ley-de-Financiamiento-compilado.pdf

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        17
        Score
        MODERATE
        In law, election campaign spending by political parties and individual candidates is limited to a maximum amount.More about indicator

        Election campaign spending in Paraguay is limited to a maximum amount, but the law only applies refers to parties, political movements and alliances. Art. 5 of the Political Finance Law states: “The maximum amount that parties, political movements and alliances are allowed to spend during national level elections, will be equivalent to 10% of the minimum wage for every authorized voter in the constituency of a candidate or a plurality of candidates“ (2012).

        Scoring Criteria

        A YES score is earned where it is forbidden for political parties and individual candidates to spend more than a certain amount in a political campaign.

        A MODERATE score is earned where the maximum amount exists, but it applies only to one actor (whether political parties or individual candidates).

        A NO score is earned where no such law exists.

        Sources

        Law No 4743/12 of Political Finance. Art. 5. 2012. http://www.bacn.gov.py/MTE5OA==&ley-n-4743

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        18
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        Open Question: Do the national laws regulating political finance also apply to sub-national units? If not, to what extent do sub-national units have laws regulating political finance?More about indicator

        In general, national laws regulating political finance apply to sub-national units. In fact, the Law No 4743/2012 that regulates Political Finance “regulates parties‘ primaries for the election of authorities at the national, departmental and municipal levels“ (Pgs. 8, 9, Rolón Luna, 2013).

        Specifically, art. 2 of the Law No 4743/2012 states that “The Law is applicable to: a) The electoral campaigns for the election of national, departmental, municipal authorities and delegates to the constituent convention. b) Parties‘ primary electoral campaigns for the election of authorities in section a). c) Electoral campaigns for referendums e) Parties and political movements annual financial activities“. No reports of problems arising from any gaps in this framework have been found.

        Legal articles that establish the allocation procedures for electoral subsidies, contribution limits or bans, accountability processes and others apply to both national level elections as well as departmental and municipal elections (Fischer, July 16, 2014). “It is important to note though that most of the time, electoral expenses at the municipal level far exceed those of at the national level“, explains Estela Ruiz Diaz (July 24, 2014). The reasons behind this can be that the number of candidates that run for posts is higher, thus increasing the amount of party‘ expenditures and making it more difficult to control them. Also, in the absence of international observers, there is more room for transgressing electoral campaign laws and norms.


        Peer reviewer comment: Agree - There are no clear examples that indicate that problems arise from gaps in the political finance regulatory framework. There are no complaints about transgressions of established norms. It should be remembered that the financing law is relatively new, and there may not have yet been time for significant violations to occur.

        Scoring Criteria

        Please describe the applicability of national political finance regulations at the sub-national level, being sure to answer: 1) whether national laws are applicable to sub-national campaigns; 2) if not, to what extent do sub-national units have similar laws regulating political finance; and 3) whether there are any reports of problems arising from gaps in this framework.

        Sources

        Jorge Rolón Luna, “La nueva Ley de financiación de partidos políticos: El dinero en la política“, Semillas para la Democracia, Asunción, 2013.

        Romy Fischer, Projects Director at NGO Semillas para la Democracia, Semillas para la Democracia Headquarters, July 16, 2014, Asunción / In person interview

        Estela Ruiz Diaz, Journalist at Ultima Hora Newspaper, July 24, 2014, Asunción / In person interview

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        Open Question: What are the predominant sources of funding for electoral campaigns?More about indicator

        The sources of funding for electoral campaigns vary according to each party or political movement. According to an anonymous source who was part of an electoral campaign of one of the major parties, “the fewer resources a party has, the more it depends on electoral subsidies and state contributions. If the party is in power, it has discretionary power over financial resources; it can virtually manipulate the whole state apparatus, through appointments, contracts, work concessions, procurements. Then there are contributions and donations from private firms, who often have business with the state, so they provide a lot of funds“ (July 21, 2014).

        Evidence shows that PLRA, the party in power at the time of the last national level elections, did make use of state resources for electoral purposes. Newspapers accused the presidential candidate, Efraín Alegre, of using financial resources from a state entity in order to cover the airplane costs of his electoral campaign (ABC Color, April 7, 2013). Yet, the most notorious cases of use of state resources involved Alianza Paraguay Alegre - the political alliance of PLRA and other minor parties- and the political movement UNACE. Several news reports noticed that the Instituto de Desarrollo Rural y de la Tierra INDERT, which is the public office in charge of all affairs regarding rural development, bought a piece of land in the countryside for US$ 13 million as part of a scheme that would benefit the presidential candidate Efraín Alegre. Back then, INDERT was headed by Ignacio Ortigoza from PLRA.The issues with the purchase were as follows:

        -Congress had already discarded the purchase in 2002 because the land was found to be inept for agricultural purposes. -The purchase was done on a holiday, quite rare to proceed with such a major financial transaction. -The land belonged to the father of Jorge Oviedo Matto, then president of the Senate chamber and a prominent figure within UNACE. -The purchase took place at the same time that PLRA was seeking UNACEs political support for its presidential candidatee. Negotiations were ongoing at the time of the purchase. -Each hectare of land was valued at US$ 1800. However, INDERT paid the sum US$ 2500.

        In spite of the controversy, UNACE ended up providing its political support to Alianza Paraguay Alegre‘s presidential candidate, further fuelling speculation that the illicit transaction was undertaken for electoral purposes (ABC Color, April 2, 2013).

        Some candidates self-finance their campaigns, the most prominent case being that of Horacio Cartes for the last national-level elections. Ricardo Canese, former financial campaign for the Frente Guasu Alliance, explains that Cartes “invested lots of money that could not be controlled by the oversight authority“ (July 15, 2014). Specifically, he refers to the advertising that Fundación Ñande Paraguay and the consortium of firms Grupo Cartes, both associated to the Colorado Party‘s candidate, put on TV, radio and newspapers outside of the legal time-period for electoral propaganda (Electoral Watch Project, July 14, 2014).

        Another important source of funding for electoral campaigns are unregulated loans According to Canese, “the Frente Guasu Alliance contracted loans with banks and lenders. Up to 80% of the cost of the campaign was financed with these funds“ (July 15, 2014). In fact, Frente Guasu senators pushed the Ministry of Finance to receive their corresponding electoral subsidies, since they were overdue with payments to banks (ABC Color, April 17, 2014).

        Financial reports from the last elections are unavailable for public scrutiny. However, there are reports that date from years 2004, 2005, and 2006 (see attached). In these, the preponderance of funding appears to come from state contributions. Yet, the category “other contributions“ (see account balance from ANR) is also relevant, but it lacks details over the origin of those funds.

        Scoring Criteria

        Please describe the important sources of funding for electoral campaigns, being sure to answer: 1) where does the preponderance of funding come from - public, individual, corporate, or other; 2) to what extent do individual candidates self-finance; and 3) do political parties have other methods of generating campaign funds, such as owning their own businesses or trusts.

        Sources

        Anonymous source who was part of an electoral campaign of one of the major parties, July 21, 2014, Asunción / In person interview

        Ricardo Canese, Parlamentarian for Mercorsur, Frente Guasu Headquarters, July 15, 2014, Asunción / In person interview

        Semillas para la Democracia. “¿Cuánto cuestan las elecciones? How much do elections cost?“. Final report of the Electoral Watch Project - Proyecto Mirador Electoral. Pgs. 10, 13, 18. Accessed on July 14, 2014 at http://www.semillas.org.py/wp-content/uploads/2013/10/Informe-Final-Proyecto-Mirador-Electoral.pdf

        “Deuda de G. 2000 millones asfixia al FG, dice senador“. ABC Color. April 17, 2014. http://www.abc.com.py/edicion-impresa/politica/deuda-de-g-2000-millones-asfixia-al-fg-dice-senador-1236135.html

        “Entidad Yacyreta pagó vuelo proselitista de Efraín Alegre“, by Nancy Espinola. ABC Color. April 7, 2013. http://www.abc.com.py/edicion-impresa/politica/entidad-yacyreta-pago-vuelo-proselitista-de-efrain-alegre-557775.html

        “Indert pagó Gs. 46.000 millones por tierras que estarían vinculadas a Oviedo Matto“, by Nancy Espínola. ABC Color. April 2, 2013. http://www.abc.com.py/edicion-impresa/politica/indert-pago-g-46000-millones-por-tierras-que-estarian-vinculadas-a-oviedo-matto-555786.html

        The names of anonymous sources are known to Global Integrity and Global Integrity has agreed not to disclose them.

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        20
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        Open Question: Have there been documented instances of violations of contribution or expenditure limits or any of the laws mentioned above (Section 2)?More about indicator

        There is evidence that parties violated somes norms of the laws that regulate financial activities during electoral campaigns in the last national level elections, either by avoiding contribution caps or circumventing the regulatory framework.

        Parties‘ account balances from the last elections had different issues with the supporting documentation. The High Court of Electoral Justice TSJE made observations, comments and suggestions. For instance, 33% of Alianza Paraguay Alegre‘s documents received feedback from TSJE, and 19% in the case of the Colorado Party (ANR). Partido Encuentro Nacional PEN had 88% of its documentation with remarks from the oversight authority. TSJE‘s management director explained that most of the observations had to do with irregularities that the documents had, such as amendments. However, there is no evidence that parties revised those issues (ABC Color, August 21, 2013).

        The Colorado Party circumvented the law through third-party actors, particularly Fundación Ñande Paraguay, associated to the presidential candidate Horacio Cartes. “The operations of this entity were clearly meant to surpass financial regulations and oversight“, said Romy Fischer, member of the Electoral Watch Project. In their final report, this issue is brought up. “The High Court of Electoral Justice cannot audit private organisations as long as their contributions, in the context of electoral campaigns, are not included as part of electoral campaign expenses [...] Fundación Ñande Paraguay clearly influenced elections through advertising campaigns“. Furthermore, the report specified that this entity financed the work of improving the public image of the candidate by positioning him as a successful businessman through propaganda outside of the legal time-period (Pg. 10, July 14, 2014).

        Although Law No 4743/2012 that regulates political finance establishes expenditure limits, the oversight authority did not abide by it alleging that it was inapplicable to the 2013 national level elections, even though the law was passed in year 2012. Hence, parties or political alliances did not violate the law as it refers to in the Paraguayan Electoral Code. However, it could be argued that they did since Law 4743/2012 was technically in place at the time of elections.


        Peer reviewer comment: Agree - There are no documented cases of violations of the political finance laws except for the cases cited by the researcher.

        Scoring Criteria

        Please list and describe all documented instances of: 1) violation of contribution limits, 2) violation of expenditure limits, and 3) financial contributions that circumvent the regulatory framework. The objective of this question is to learn more about the local context, so please explain the cases in as much detail as relevant.

        Sources

        Romy Fischer, Projects Coordinator at NGO Semillas para la Democracia, Semillas para la Democracia Headquarters, July 16, 2014, Asunción / In person interview

        Semillas para la Democracia. “¿Cuánto cuestan las elecciones? How much do elections cost?“. Final report of the Electoral Watch Project - Proyecto Mirador Electoral. Pgs. 10, 13, 18. Accessed on July 14, 2014 at http://www.semillas.org.py/wp-content/uploads/2013/10/Informe-Final-Proyecto-Mirador-Electoral.pdf

        “ANR dice que gastó en comicios solo US$ 8,7 millones y PLRA casi el doble“. ABC Color. August 21, 2013. http://www.abc.com.py/edicion-impresa/politica/anr-dice-que-gasto-en-comicios-solo-us-87-millones-y-plra-casi-el-doble-609066.html

        “Partidos violan ley electoral sobre propaganda, afirman“. ABC Color. March 21, 2013.http://www.abc.com.py/edicion-impresa/politica/partidos-violan-ley-electoral-sobre-propaganda-afirman-551785.html

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    Reporting and Public Disclosure

    More about category
    composite
    35
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      Reporting Requirements to the Oversight Entity
      More about category
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        21
        Score
        MODERATE
        In law, political parties and individual candidates report itemized contributions and expenditures both during and outside electoral campaign periods.More about indicator

        The law establishes that parties report itemized contributions and expenditures during and outside electoral campaign periods. In regards to electoral campaigns, art. 3 of the Political Finance Law, which modifies art. 281 of the Paraguayan Electoral Code establishes that in order to receive direct public funding, campaign managers must keep an account balance of all received funds with the origins of these as well as the expenses. Supporting documentation must accompany this registry. The article specifies that “forty days after election day, [parties, political movements and alliances] must turn in documentation of funds‘ inflow and outflow to the Electoral Tribunal, along with an annexed report of all contributions or donations received detailing their origins and amounts“. After this, the Office of Comptroller General will proceed to audit the accountability reports. Parties, alliances and political movements will have ten days to make any requested clarifications from the Comptroller Office, which will ultimately determine approval or rejection of their accountability reports.

        Outside of the electoral period, art. 66 states that “political parties must turn in their balance, funds‘ inflow and outflow, with an annexed report of received contributions or donations with details of the amounts and their origins to the Electoral Justice High Court [...] within the first ninety days after the fiscal year ended“. The law does not mention candidates.

        Scoring Criteria

        A YES score is earned where political parties and individual candidates are required to report itemized contributions and expenditures to the oversight authority, both during and outside electoral campaign periods.

        A MODERATE score is earned where: 1) the requirement applies for itemized contributions, but not for itemized expenditures, or 2) it applies only during the electoral campaign but not outside it. A MODERATE score is also earned where the requirement exists, but it only applies to one actor (whether political parties and individual candidates).

        A NO score is earned where no such law exists.

        Sources

        Law No 834/96 of the Paraguayan Electoral Code. 1996. http://www.semillas.org.py/wp-content/uploads/2013/03/Texto-C%C3%B3digo-Electoral-con-Ley-de-Financiamiento-compilado.pdf

        Law No 4743/96 of Political Finance. 2012. http://www.bacn.gov.py/MTE5OA==&ley-n-4743

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        22
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        NO
        In law, political parties and individual candidates are required to report their financial information on a monthly basis during the electoral campaign.More about indicator

        Political parties, movements and alliances must submit reports of contributions and expenditures once, forty days after the election day. Art. 3 of the Political Finance Law, which modifies art. 281 of the Paraguayan Electoral Code, establishes that ““forty days after election day, [parties, political movements and alliances] must turn in documentation of funds‘ inflow and outflow to the Electoral Tribunal, along with an annexed report of all contributions or donations received detailing their origins and amounts“.

        According to Article 154 of the Electoral Code, the official election period is between 90 and 135 days long. This means that parties, movements, and alliances submit one report for each 90 or 135 day period, which amounts to at best quarterly reporting, and at worst, less than quarterly but more than biannually (in reference to the defined campaign period).

        Scoring Criteria

        A YES score is earned where political parties and individual candidates must report monthly their financial information to the oversight authority during the electoral campaign.

        A MODERATE score is earned where the requirement exists on a quarterly basis. A MODERATE score is also earned where the requirement only applies to one actor (whether political parties or individual candidates).

        A NO score is earned where no such law exists.

        Sources

        Law No 834/96 of the Paraguayan Electoral Code. 1996. http://www.semillas.org.py/wp-content/uploads/2013/03/Texto-C%C3%B3digo-Electoral-con-Ley-de-Financiamiento-compilado.pdf

        Law No 4743/96 of Political Finance. 2012. http://www.bacn.gov.py/MTE5OA==&ley-n-4743

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        23
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        MODERATE
        In law, political parties and individual candidates are required to report their financial information on a quarterly basis outside of electoral campaign periods.More about indicator

        Political parties are required by law to report their financial information on a yearly basis, according to art. 3 of the Political Finance Law, which modifies art. 66 of the Paraguayan Electoral Code. According to the law, “political parties must turn in their balance, funds‘ inflow and outflow, with an annexed report of received contributions or donations with details of the amounts and their origins to the Electoral Justice High Court [...] within the first ninety days after the fiscal year ended“.

        Individual candidates are not mentioned.

        Scoring Criteria

        A YES score is earned where political parties and individual candidates must report quarterly their financial information to the oversight authority outside of electoral campaign periods.

        A MODERATE score is earned where the requirement exists on a yearly basis. A MODERATE score is also earned where the requirement only applies to one actor (whether political parties or individual candidates).

        A NO score is earned where no such law exists.

        Sources

        Law No 834/96 of the Paraguayan Electoral Code. Art. 66. 1996. http://www.semillas.org.py/wp-content/uploads/2013/03/Texto-C%C3%B3digo-Electoral-con-Ley-de-Financiamiento-compilado.pdf

        Law No 4743/12 of Political Finance. Art. 3. 2012. http://www.bacn.gov.py/MTE5OA==&ley-n-4743

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        24
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        25
        In practice, to what extent do political parties and individual candidates report itemized financial information monthly?More about indicator

        Parties, political movements and alliances are required by law to submit their accountability reports forty days after the election day to the oversight authority. However, even if they have done so, as the High Court of Electoral Justice confirmed they did in the past national level elections (TSJE, June 24, 2013), those reports are not available to the public. The news piece from TSJE details the overall expenditures‘ amounts from 19 political parties, movements and alliances, without much detail as to what exactly parties spent on during their electoral campaigns (June 24, 2013). Similarly, the final report of the Electoral Watch Project provides the same numbers (July 14, 2014). Therefore, there is no evidence to guarantee that parties have reported itemized contributions and expenses.

        A FOI request has been filed to the oversight authority on the part of the researcher and staff from NGO Semillas para la Democracia in order to access the actual reports (July 16, 2014). However, there have been no responses as of the final date of the research period (August 11, 2014).

        There are, however, account balances from parties that can be studied that date from years 2004, 2005 and 2006 (see attached). The High Court of Electoral Justice released them after a network of NGOs and civil society activists demanded access to this information during those years (August 5, 2014). The account balances are the ones that parties generate at the end of financial year. These contain contain general, rather than itemized details of electoral expenses or contributions. In fact, one of the greatest criticisms from NGOs over these reports was the lack of specific details.

        Scoring Criteria

        A 100 score is earned where: 1) political parties and individual candidates report on their financial information monthly, and 2) the reports include both itemized contributions and itemized expenditures.

        A 50 score is earned where: 1) the reports are occasionally general rather than itemized or don't contain all accounts, or 2) the reporting frequency is quarterly.

        A 0 score is earned where: 1) political parties and individual candidates rarely or never file reports, 2) the reports are filed but are rarely or never itemized or refer only to either contributions or expenditures, or 3) the reporting frequency is less than quarterly.

        Sources

        Paulo Gonzalez, NGO Semillas para la Democracia, Semillas para la Democracia Headquarters, 16 July 2014 / In person interview

        Semillas para la Democracia. “¿Cuánto cuestan las elecciones? How much do elections cost?“. Final report of the Electoral Watch Project - Proyecto Mirador Electoral. Pgs. 10, 13, 18. Accessed on July 14, 2014 at http://www.semillas.org.py/wp-content/uploads/2013/10/Informe-Final-Proyecto-Mirador-Electoral.pdf

        “Un total de 19 agrupaciones políticas presentaron rendición de cuenta“. TSJE. June 24, 2013. http://www.tsje.gov.py/gacetilla/3067-un-total-de-19-agrupaciones-politicas-presentaron-rendicion-de-cuenta.html

        “Balance de partidos políticos ya es información pública“. Grupo Impulsor para la Regulación del Financiamiento Político// Network for the Regulation of Political Finance. Accessed on August 5, 2014.http://www.financiamientopolitico.org.py/V2/balance-de-partidos-politicos-ya-es-informacion-publica

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        25
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        0
        In practice, to what extent do financial reports by political parties and individual candidates include all types of contributions?More about indicator

        Parties, political movements and alliances are required by law to submit their accountability reports forty days after the election day to the oversight authority, providing precise details over the origins and amounts of all contributions. However, even if they have done so, as the High Court of Electoral Justice confirmed they did in the past national level elections (TSJE, June 24, 2013), those reports are not available to the public. The news piece from TSJE details the overall expenditures‘ amounts from 19 political parties, movements and alliances, without detail as to what exactly parties spent on during their electoral campaigns or what contributions they received, be it in-kind or cash (June 24, 2013). Therefore, there is no evidence to guarantee that parties have reported all types of contributions, and itemized information and the personal identifiers of donors are unavailable.

        A FOI request has been filed to the oversight authority on the part of the researcher and staff from NGO Semillas para la Democracia in order to access the actual reports (July 16, 2014). However, there have been no responses as of the final date of the research period (August 11, 2014).

        There are, however, account balances from parties that can be studied that date from years 2004, 2005 and 2006 (see attached). The High Court of Electoral Justice released them after a network of NGOs and civil society activists demanded access to this information during those years (August 5, 2014). The account balances are the ones that parties generate at the end of the financial year nonetheless. These contain general rather than a detailed description of all types of contributions (inflows). There are no specifications about the origin or types of contributions. Instead, these are piled up under the category “General contributions“ or “Other contributions“ (August 5, 2014).

        Overall, the veracity of the financial reports is highly questionable. According to an anonymous source who was part of an electoral campaign of one of the major partiess in the past elections, most of the declared contributions and expenses are false: “It‘s all a facade. Parties keep two types of accountabilities. The one they can make public and the one they cannot. We kept these ourselves. Some contributions can be published in those reports, such as a bank loan or the financial support from the Electoral Justice. But not all. The same thing applies to expenses“ (July 21, 2014).

        Scoring Criteria

        A 100 score is earned where: 1) reports include an itemized list of all contributions indicating their type (in-kind, cash where allowed, etc.) and amount (estimated value for in-kind contributions), and 2) contain donors' names and addresses (or other personal identifier).

        A 50 score is earned where only one of the two conditions listed in the 100 criteria is met.

        A 0 score is earned where neither condition is met.

        Sources

        Anonymous source who was part of an electoral campaign of one of the major parties, July 21, 2014, Asunción / In person interview

        Paulo González, Semillas para la Democracia Headquarters, July 16, 2014, Asunción / In person interview.

        “Un total de 19 agrupaciones políticas presentaron rendición de cuenta“. TSJE. June 24, 2013. http://www.tsje.gov.py/gacetilla/3067-un-total-de-19-agrupaciones-politicas-presentaron-rendicion-de-cuenta.html

        “Balance de partidos políticos ya es información pública“. Grupo Impulsor para la Regulación del Financiamiento Político// Network for the Regulation of Political Finance. Accessed on August 5, 2014.http://www.financiamientopolitico.org.py/V2/balance-de-partidos-politicos-ya-es-informacion-publica

        The names of anonymous sources are known to Global Integrity and Global Integrity has agreed not to disclose them.

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      Availability of Electoral Campaigns' Financial Information to the Public
      More about category
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        26
        Score
        MODERATE
        In law, financial information from political parties and individual candidates must be available to the public.More about indicator

        The law establishes regulations over the availability of financial information from parties, political movements and alliances. It does not make references to financial information from individual candidates. Art. 3 of the Political Finance Law, which modifies art. 281 of the Paraguayan Electoral Code, states: “[...] Forty days after election day, [parties, political movements and alliances] must turn in documentation of funds‘ inflow and outflow to the Electoral Tribunal, along with an annexed report of all contributions or donations received detailing their origins and amounts. The Electoral Tribunal ought to order their immediate publication on the Website of the High Court of Electoral Justice, freely available for reference, ten days after [the documentation] are received“. No specific format to turn in documentation is mentioned in the law.

        Scoring Criteria

        A YES score is earned where in law financial information of political parties and individual candidates must be made available to the public, whether online or digitally within two days of request.

        A MODERATE score is earned where financial information must be made available to the public, but no requirement exists regarding cost, format or number of days within which it must be made available.

        A NO score is earned where no such law exists.

        Sources

        Law No 4743/12 of Political Finance. Art. 3. 2012. http://www.bacn.gov.py/MTE5OA==&ley-n-4743

        Law No 834/96 of the Paraguayan Electoral Code. Art. 281. 1996. http://www.semillas.org.py/wp-content/uploads/2013/03/Texto-C%C3%B3digo-Electoral-con-Ley-de-Financiamiento-compilado.pdf

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        27
        Score
        25
        In practice, to what extent can citizens easily access the financial information of all political parties and individual candidates?More about indicator

        Parties, political movements and alliances are required by law to submit their accountability reports forty days after the election day to the oversight authority. These reports ought to be uploaded to the Electoral Justice‘s Website for public scrutiny. However, they could not be found in there. A news entry details the overall expenditures‘ amounts from 19 political parties, movements and alliances, without much detail as to what exactly parties spent on during their electoral campaigns or what they received as contributions (June 24, 2013).

        A FOI request has been filed to the oversight authority on the part of the researcher and staff from NGO Semillas para la Democracia in order to access the actual reports without success (July 16, 2014). There have been no responses as of the final date of the research period (August 11, 2014). Alongside, the final report of the Electoral Watch Project brought up the issue around accessing parties‘ account balances (July 14, 2014). The researcher also made requests to parties and alliances (ANR and Alianza Paraguay Alegre specifically) to access their account balances from the last national level elections with no positive results. Rubén Ocampos, former campaign official from Alianza Paraguay Alegre, explained that the Electoral Justice has all the documentation and if needed, requests should be made to the oversight authority (July 21, 2014).

        There are, however, account balances from parties that can be studied that date from years 2004, 2005 and 2006 (see attached). The High Court of Electoral Justice released them after a network of NGOs and civil society activists demanded access to this information during those years (August 5, 2014). The account balances are the ones that parties generate at the end of financial year nonetheless.

        Scoring Criteria

        A 100 score is earned where: 1) all relevant financial information is freely available online, 2) it can be obtained digitally within two days of requesting it, and 3) it is in a machine readable format (for example in csv or xml format).

        A 50 score is earned where: 1) information is available but in some cases is incomplete or lacking detail, 2) obtaining complete information takes up to a month, or 3) it's not necessarily digital or in machine readable format.

        A 0 score is earned where: 1) the information is not publicly available, or 2) obtaining it takes more than three months, or 3) the cost of obtaining it is prohibitive for the regular citizen.

        Sources

        Paulo Gonzalez, NGO Semillas para la Democracia, Semillas para la Democracia Headquarters, July 16, 2014, Asunción / In person interview

        Rubén Ocampos, Private Lawyer, July 21, 2014 / Email

        Semillas para la Democracia. “¿Cuánto cuestan las elecciones? How much do elections cost?“. Final report of the Electoral Watch Project - Proyecto Mirador Electoral. Pgs. 10, 13, 18. Accessed on July 14, 2014 at http://www.semillas.org.py/wp-content/uploads/2013/10/Informe-Final-Proyecto-Mirador-Electoral.pdf

        “Un total de 19 agrupaciones políticas presentaron rendición de cuenta“. TSJE. June 24, 2013. http://www.tsje.gov.py/gacetilla/3067-un-total-de-19-agrupaciones-politicas-presentaron-rendicion-de-cuenta.html

        “Balance de partidos políticos ya es información pública“. Grupo Impulsor para la Regulación del Financiamiento Político// Network for the Regulation of Political Finance. Accessed on August 5, 2014.http://www.financiamientopolitico.org.py/V2/balance-de-partidos-politicos-ya-es-informacion-publica

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        25
        In practice, to what extent is financial information published in a standardized format?More about indicator

        Parties, political movements and alliances are required by law to submit their accountability reports forty days after the election day to the oversight authority. These reports ought to be uploaded to the Electoral Justice‘s Website for public scrutiny. However, they could not be found in there. A news entry details the overall expenditures‘ amounts from 19 political parties, movements and alliances, without much detail as to what exactly parties spent on during their electoral campaigns or what they received as contributions (June 24, 2013).

        A FOI request has been filed to the oversight authority on the part of the researcher and staff from NGO Semillas para la Democracia in order to access the actual reports without success (July 16, 2014). There have been no responses as of the final date of the research period (August 11, 2014). Alongside, the final report of the Electoral Watch Project brought up the issue around accessing parties‘ account balances (July 14, 2014). The researcher also made requests to parties and alliances (ANR and Alianza Paraguay Alegre specifically) to access their account balances from the last national level elections with no positive results. Rubén Ocampos, former campaign official from Alianza Paraguay Alegre, explained that the Electoral Justice has all the documentation and if needed, requests should be made to the oversight authority (July 21, 2014).

        There are, however, parties‘ account balances that can be studied dating from years 2004, 2005 and 2006 (see attached). The High Court of Electoral Justice released them after a network of NGOs and civil society activists demanded access to this information during those years (August 5, 2014). Judging from these financial papers (see attached), there has been a standarized format in place. Parties reported the following: balance sheet, the situation of income and expenses, and a cash flow statement. It is important to note that none of the reports provide details on the origin of contributions (inflows), dates received or identifiers, and no current data guarantees that a set format is still followed in the reporting of financial information.


        Peer reviewer comment: Agree. The financial reports publisehd by parties do not have a standardized format, nor do publications of the electoral justice. Each group presents the reports as they see fit. Both political parties and the electoral justice report only general numbers to the press. For example, as is clear in the article below, they report only money destined for electoral propaganda, but do not clarify that companies were hired for any purpose. They report transaction costs without specifiying the contracted companies. The electoral justice does not publish detailed financial information in most cases, and nor do parties.

        Scoring Criteria

        A 100 score is earned where financial information for all political parties and individual candidates is available to the public in a standardized format.

        A 50 score is earned where only part of the information is published in a standardized format. A 50 score is also earned where the information is standardized, but it doesn't cover all political parties and individual candidates.

        A 0 score is earned where financial information is not available in a standardized format.

        Sources

        Paulo Gonzalez, NGO Semillas para la Democracia, Semillas para la Democracia Headquarters, July 16, 2014, Asunción / In person interview

        Semillas para la Democracia. “¿Cuánto cuestan las elecciones? How much do elections cost?“. Final report of the Electoral Watch Project - Proyecto Mirador Electoral. Pgs. 10, 13, 18. Accessed on July 14, 2014 at http://www.semillas.org.py/wp-content/uploads/2013/10/Informe-Final-Proyecto-Mirador-Electoral.pdf

        “Un total de 19 agrupaciones políticas presentaron rendición de cuenta“. TSJE. June 24, 2013. http://www.tsje.gov.py/gacetilla/3067-un-total-de-19-agrupaciones-politicas-presentaron-rendicion-de-cuenta.html

        “Balance de partidos políticos ya es información pública“. Grupo Impulsor para la Regulación del Financiamiento Político// Network for the Regulation of Political Finance. Accessed on August 5, 2014. http://www.financiamientopolitico.org.py/V2/balance-de-partidos-politicos-ya-es-informacion-publica

        Reviewer's sources: "ANR gastó US$ 8,560,000 en elecciones." ABC Color. 21 June 2013. http://www.abc.com.py/nacionales/anr-gasto-mas-de-g-38536-millones-587085.html

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        29
        Score
        100
        In practice, to what extent do mainstream journalism media outlets use political finance data in their reporting?More about indicator

        Mainstream journalism media outlets frequently use political finance data in their reporting. Estela Ruiz Diaz, journalist from the same newspaper, explained that in fact, it is mostly through media that citizens can learn about political finance data (July 24, 2014). The major independent newspapers, ABC Color and Ultima Hora, and a smaller one, La Nación, have published this type of information in different occasions. For instance, ABC Color noted that parties received their corresponding electoral subsidies from the oversight authority without a throughout auidit of their account balances (April 19, 2013). Earlier on, Ultima Hora published a news story about the amounts of funds and subsidies that each party and alliance should receive according to the law (March 22, 2013).

        Related information about political finance have been used by journalists in their reporting. La Nación published a story on how the Frente Guasu Alliance was requesting its due payment to the High Court of Electoral Justice (31 May, 2014). Radio stations have also included this information on their daily news. For instance, Radio Cardinal 730 AM interviewed an advisor of the oversight authority about the procedures in place for parties to receive their annual contributions (May 6, 2014).

        Scoring Criteria

        A 100 score is earned where at least three independent mainstream journalism media outlets have used officially published political party or individual candidate financial information as part of their reporting.

        A 50 score is earned where one independent mainstream journalism media outlet has used officially published financial information as part of its reporting.

        A 0 score is earned where no mainstream journalism media outlet has used officially published financial information as part of its reporting.

        Sources

        Estela Ruiz Diaz, Journalist at Ultima Hora Newspaper, July 24, 2014, Asunción / In person interview

        “TSJE entregó Gs. 18.000 millones a los partidos en concepto de subsidios y aportes“. ABC Color. April 19, 2014. http://www.abc.com.py/edicion-impresa/politica/tsje-entrego-g-18000-millones-a-los-partidos-en-subsidios-y-aportes-1236480.html

        “Justicia Electoral paga subsidio al Frente Guasu“. ABC Color. June 14, 2013. http://www.abc.com.py/edicion-impresa/politica/justicia-electoral-paga-subsidio-al-frente-guasu-1255462.html

        “Partidos recibieron Gs. 10 mil millones de subsidio y aporte“. Ultima Hora. July 13, 2014. http://www.ultimahora.com/partidos-recibieron-g-10-mil-millones-subsidio-y-aporte-n811589.htm

        “Hacienda autoriza Gs. 3 mil millones para partidos por elecciones de 2013“. Ultima Hora. March 22, 2014.http://www.ultimahora.com/hacienda-autoriza-g-3-mil-millones-partidos-elecciones-2013-n777081.html

        “Frente Guasu reclama al TSJE el pago de más de Gs. 1000 millones“. La Nación. 31 May, 2014. http://www.lanacion.com.py/articulo/166487--frente-guasu-reclama-al-tsje-el-pago-de-mas-de-g-1000-millones.html

        “Sobre aportes y subsidios electorales. Al respecto habló Luis Alberto Mauro, Asesor del TSJE“. Radio Cardinal AM 730. May 6, 2014. http://cardinal.com.py/noticias/sobreaportesysubsidioselectoralesalrespectohablluisalbertomauroasesordeltsje26246.html?page=152

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        50
        In practice, to what extent were there no news reports or other documented incidents of violation or abuse of political finance laws?More about indicator

        In the last elections, parties violated financial regulations after the elections. TSJE announced that some parties, without naming which ones, solicited electoral subsidies without providing all the necessary documentation (Mirador Electoral Final report, July 14, 2014). Also, out of the 36 contending political parties and alliances, only 19 turned in their accountability reports on time (TSJE, June 24, 2013).

        The second case showed proof of abuse of financial regulations. In an interview, Frente Guasu‘s former campaign official Ricardo Canese criticised what he considered to be misleading propaganda on TV in favour Horacio Cartes, the Colorado Party‘s presidential candidate aired months before it was legally allowed (July 15, 2014). Through Cartes‘ corporate group, Grupo Cartes, or Fundación Ñande Paraguay, Cartes‘ NGO, TV aired propaganda showcasing the candidate‘s work or ideas without explicitly urging viewers to vote for him but subtly persuading them to do so.

        Romy Fischer from the NGO Semillas para la Democracia described the practice as a mechanism that hindered the capacity of TSJE and other monitoring agencies to follow up on the origins of campaign funds, since the advertisements were sponsored by private entities and therefore, not included in the accounts of the campaign (July 16, 2014). In the final report of the NGO‘s project Mirador Electoral, the case is brought up as one of the main issues before the electoral propaganda season officially begun (Mirador Electoral, July 14, 2014).


        Peer reviewer comment: Agree. Really there are no other documented cases of violations of the political financing regulations.

        Scoring Criteria

        A 100 score is earned where there were no news reports or other documented incidents of violation or abuse of political finance laws during the most recent national election.

        A 50 score is earned where there were news reports or other documented incidents of no more than two cases of violation or abuse of political finance laws during the most recent national election.

        A 0 score is earned where there were frequent news reports or other documented incidents of violation or abuse of political finance laws during the most recent national election.

        Sources

        Romy Fischer. Projects Coordinator at NGO Semillas para la Democracia, Semillas para la Democracia office, Asunción, Personal Interview. July 16, 2014.

        Ricardo Canese. Parliamentarian for Mercosur, Frente Guasu Headquarters, Asunción, Personal Interview. July 15, 2014.

        Semillas para la Democracia. “¿Cuánto cuestan las elecciones“. Final report of the Electoral Watch Project - Proyecto Mirador Electoral. Pgs. 10, 13, 18. Accessed on July 14, 2014 at http://www.semillas.org.py/wp-content/uploads/2013/10/Informe-Final-Proyecto-Mirador-Electoral.pdf

        “Propaganda extemporánea: Canese critica a Cartes y Alegre“. La Nación. February 9, 2013. http://www.lanacion.com.py/articulo/112551-propaganda-extemporanea-canese-critica-a-cartes-y-alegre.html

        “Un total de 19 agrupaciones políticas presentaron rendición de cuenta“. TSJE. June 24, 2013. http://www.tsje.gov.py/gacetilla/3067-un-total-de-19-agrupaciones-politicas-presentaron-rendicion-de-cuenta.html

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        31
        Score
        25
        In practice, to what extent were there no news reports or other documented incidents of vote-buying?More about indicator

        Vote-buying has been a common electoral practice in Paraguay. In the past elections, the Office of the Public Prosecutor as well as media outlets reported some cases, including a high-profile one that involved a senator in Congress. A journalist commented that a resident from Horqueta, a city in the north of the country, announced that the mayor had been receiving people in his house on election day to pay them cash in exchange of votes for the Colorado Party (ABC Color, April 21, 2013). On a macro level, the Office declared that 80 complaints were filled on that day, which included cases of bribery and voter coercion (ABC Color, April 21, 2013).

        The most flagrant case revealed a larger scheme of vote-buying four days before the elections. On video, senator Silvio Ovelar from the Colorado Party (ANR), who was also running for re-election to Congress, is caught offering a cash deal to a leader from PLRA in order to scare off PLRA voters and thus provide advantage to his party. Ovelar explains that he would pay Gs 100,000 - about US$ 22 - to each person that votes for the Colorady Party, and the same amount to each “liberal“ - from PLRA - that does not show up at the polling stations. He proposes to the leader that he help him keep liberales at home:“...For each [liberal] voter that stays at home, you get Gs. 100,000...20 (liberales) stay, 2 million go for you; 30, 3 million go for you“. After media outlets published the video, the senator confirmed the veracity of its content. However, he argued that it was a mechanism to expose how liberales were selling their votes. (Ultima Hora, April 19, 2013). A public outcry ensued and the senator was suspended for 60 days. He was re-elected for another term in Congress nevertheless.

        Scoring Criteria

        A 100 score is earned where there were no news reports or other documented incidents of vote-buying during the most recent national election.

        A 50 score is earned where there were news reports or other documented incidents of no more than two cases of vote-buying during the most recent national election.

        A 0 score is earned where there were frequent news reports or other documented incidents of vote-buying during the most recent national election.

        Sources

        Ricardo Canese. Frente Guasu Parliamentarian at Mercosur, Frente Guasu Headquarters, Asunción, Personal Interview. July 15, 2014.

        “Denuncian a ANR por compra de votos en Horqueta“. ABC Color. April 21, 2013. http://www.abc.com.py/nacionales/denuncian-a-anr-por-compra-de-votos-en-horqueta-563435.html

        “Senador, en compra de votos“. ABC Color. April 18, 2013. http://www.abc.com.py/nacionales/senador-en-compra-de-votos-562183.html

        “Un video involucra al senador Silvio Ovelar en la compra de votos liberales“. Ultima Hora. April 19, 2013. http://www.ultimahora.com/un-video-involucra-al-senador-silvio-ovelar-la-compra-votos-liberales-n614939.html

        “Registran 80 denuncias electorales“. ABC Color. April 21, 2013. http://www.abc.com.py/nacionales/registran-80-denuncias-electorales-563515.html

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        32
        Score
        50
        In practice, to what extent do civil society organizations use political finance data?More about indicator

        The NGO Semillas para la Democracia has officially used and published financial information from electoral campaigns as part of the Electoral Watch Project. The final report of the project, titled “How much do elections cost?“, comprises the estimated expenses of parties, political movements and alliances on publicity during the last national level elections. It also contains the accountabiilty reports that parties officially turned in to the High Court of Electoral Justice after the elections, in order to compare those numbers with the ones that the NGO gathered in its work (July 14, 2014).

        Romy Fischer explains that they estimated expenses using the market price of ads on TV and press, while taking note of the number of times that parties‘ ads appeared on these news outlets. “So our numbers do not truly reflect the real amounts that parties spent on political propaganda during the electoral period“ (July 16, 2014). The results were published on newspapers, highlighting the bigger role that money plays in politics (Ultima Hora, February 2, 2013/ ABC Color, November 8, 2013).

        Scoring Criteria

        A 100 score is earned where at least three civil society organizations have used officially published political party or individual candidate financial information as part of their advocacy or awareness work.

        A 50 score is earned where one civil society organization has used officially published financial information as part of its advocacy or awareness work.

        A 0 score is earned where no civil society organization has used officially published financial information as part of its work.

        Sources

        Romy Fischer. Projects Coordinator at NGO Semillas para la Democracia, Semillas para la Democracia office, Asunción, Personal Interview. July 16, 2014.

        Semillas para la Democracia. “¿Cuánto cuestan las elecciones? How much do elections cost?“. Final report of the Electoral Watch Project - Proyecto Mirador Electoral. Pgs. 10, 13, 18. Accessed on July 14, 2014 at http://www.semillas.org.py/wp-content/uploads/2013/10/Informe-Final-Proyecto-Mirador-Electoral.pdf

        “Sin dinero no hay poder“. Mayra Rivarola, ABC Color, November 8, 2013. http://www.abc.com.py/especiales/fin-de-semana/sin-dinero-no-hay-poder-636941.html

        “Gasto electoral de la ANR fue casi el doble que el del PLRA“, Ultima Hora, February 2, 2013. http://www.ultimahora.com/gasto-electoral-la-anr-fue-casi-el-doble-que-el-del-plra-n597282.html

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        Score
        --
        Open Question: Have there been political finance legal reforms or reform bills presented to the legislature in the last 10 years?More about indicator

        In the past ten years, there has been one major legal reform regarding political finance, which took place in year 2012. The reform modified 15 articles of the Paraguayan Electoral Code through the Law No 4743/12 with the aim of regulating financial activities of parties, political movements and alliances. “In 2008, a coalition of CSOs and political parties‘ representatives pushed for more robust financial regulations, so we drafted a new bill proposal. After four years, the bill was passed in Congress“, said Carmen Romero, former coordinator of the Network for the Regulation of Political Finance (July 14, 2014). In a descriptive report, Rolón Luna explained the larger goal of the bill: “The new legal framework establishe[d] a series of new restrictions, requirements and obligations in the search for more transparency around the functioning of parties and political movements“ (Pg. 8, 2013).

        The Law No 4743/12 “That Regulates Political Finance“ introduced changes to articles 62, 64, 66, 68, 70, 71, 72, 276, 278, 279, 280, 281, 282, 330 and 336 of the Paraguayan Electoral Code. Rolón Luna emphasised some of the most relevant ones. “[The Law] regulates partisan primaries for national level elections [...]. Also, parties are obliged to keep initialled and foliated documents to provide written record of all natural and legal persons that make contributions or donations [art. 62]. At the same time, party authorities must now keep proof of payments and other documentation related to their accountabilities for six years [art. 64]“ (pg. 9, 2013).

        Other important aspects that the Law established are the requirement of turning in all supporting documentation of parties‘ accountabilities in order to receive state funding (art. 276). At the same time, art. 5 establishes a limit to electoral spending during national level campaigns. Sanctions to violations of this limit are also included in art. 9.

        The Law still faced some difficulties in its application. Firstly, the oversight authority, the High Court of Electoral Justice TSJE, did not to abide by it during the last national elections (2013), arguing that the new legal framework was inapplicable for that electoral cycle (Romero, July 14. 2014). Alongside, TSJE‘S coordinator of the 2013 general elections, Carlos Maria Ljubetic, questioned the effectiveness of the law. “This new law can easily be circumvented by politicians with administrative tricks“ (ABC Color, October 24, 2013). According to Rolón Luna, these claims set a negative precedent. “Technicians at TSJE have done little to adopt [the new law], they simply ignore it, which is a very serious issue that affects the institutions of the republic and the very legitimacy of the electoral process“ (Pg. 15, 2013).


        Peer reviewer comment: Agree - The researcher's account is correct. The law of 4743 of Political Financing took at least five years of discussion in Congress. It was presented in 2007 by a group of members of different political parties and even was on the verge of being rejected. In mid-2011, as part of a settlement between the Patria Querida party and the Colorado Party for the election of the Board of Directors of the Chamber of Deputies, passage of the law was agreed. Also at that time emerged the figure of Horacio Cartes, a successful entrepreneur with significant financial resources as a possible candidate for President for the Colorado Party. That generated fear on the part of liberal politicians who were in power. As a result, they finally strongly supported standards to control spending in the presidential campaign.

        Scoring Criteria

        Please list and describe all documented instances of: 1) political finance reforms, including bills passed, executive orders signed, court rulings and any other legal act that had a direct effect on existent political finance regulation, and 2) all legal reform attempts presented to the legislature even if they were not approved. Please describe the political context that produced the reforms or reform attempts.

        Sources

        Law No 4743/12 of Political Finance. 2012. http://www.bacn.gov.py/MTE5OA==&ley-n-4743

        Law No 834/96 of the Paraguayan Electoral Code. 1996. http://www.semillas.org.py/wp-content/uploads/2013/03/Texto-C%C3%B3digo-Electoral-con-Ley-de-Financiamiento-compilado.pdf

        Carmen Romero, Fonacide‘s Executive Director, Secretaría Técnica de Planificación Headquarters, Personal Interview. July 14, 2014.

        Jorge Rolón Luna. “La nueva Ley de financiación de partidos políticos. El dinero en la política“. Semillas para la Democracia, Asunción, 2013.

        “La normativa carece de efectividad, dice Ljubetic“. ABC Color. October 24, 2013. http://www.abc.com.py/edicion-impresa/politica/la-normativa-carece-de-efectividad-dice-ljubetic-468774.html

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    Third Party Actors

    More about category
    composite
    0
    • expand button!
      Applicability of the Law to Third-Party Actors
      More about category
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        34
        Score
        NO
        In law, third-party actors (foundations, think tanks, unions, political action committees, etc.) report itemized contributions received and expenditures to an oversight authority and the information is made publicly available.More about indicator

        No such law exists.

        Scoring Criteria

        A YES score is earned where: 1) third-party actors are required to report to the oversight authority itemized contributions received and expenditures related to their support of electoral campaigns, and 2) the information must be publicly available.

        A MODERATE score is earned where third-party actors are required to report itemized contributions received and expenditures related to their support of electoral campaigns, but the information is not required to be publicly available. A MODERATE score is also earned where regulations exist, but only apply to electoral campaigns of one actor (whether political party or individual candidate).

        A NO score is earned where no such law exists.

        Sources

        Law No 834/96 of the Paraguayan Electoral Code. 1996. http://www.semillas.org.py/wp-content/uploads/2013/03/Texto-C%C3%B3digo-Electoral-con-Ley-de-Financiamiento-compilado.pdf

        Law No 4743/12 of Political Finance. 2012. http://www.bacn.gov.py/MTE5OA==&ley-n-4743

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        Score
        0
        In practice, to what extent do third-party actors (foundations, think tanks, unions, political action committees, etc.) report itemized contributions received and expenditures to an oversight authority?More about indicator

        Third-party actors in Paraguay never report itemized contributions received or expenditures to the oversight authority. Neither the Paraguayan Electoral Code not the Political Finance Law regulate the activities of these types of institutions, even though they do exist and operate in favour of certain parties. “The purpose of these organizations is precisely to cover up electoral finances“ (academic who requested anonymity, July 21, 2014).

        The most prominent case of an NGO that worked in favour of a presidential candidate in the past national level elections is that of Fundación Ñande Paraguay and the consortium of firms Grupo Cartes, linked to the ANR‘s Horacio Cartes. “This foundation [Fundación Ñande Paraguay] easily operated without restrictions or auditing to the benefit of Cartes“ (source who requested anonymity, July 21, 2014). The final report of the Electoral Watch Project regarded this issue as one of the greatest obstacles to political finance transparency. “The High Court of Electoral Justice cannot audit private organisations as long as their contributions, in the context of electoral campaigns, are not included as part of electoral campaign expenses [...] the Grupo Cartes and Fundación Ñande Paraguay clearly influenced elections through advertising campaigns“. The report specified that these two entities financed the work of improving the public image of the candidate by positioning him as a successful businessman through propaganda (Pg. 10, July 14, 2014).

        The Secretary-Treasurer at the oversight authority explained that he could not recall receiving financial reports from these types entities. “They operate as private institutions. We cannot control their financial activities for this reason“ (August 6, 2014).

        Scoring Criteria

        A 100 score is earned where all third-party actors report to an oversight authority both itemized contributions received and itemized expenditures.

        A 50 score is earned where third-party actors report to an oversight authority either itemized contributions received or expenditures, but not both. A 50 score is also earned where the reports refer only to one type of third-party actor, but do not cover others.

        A 0 score is earned where third-party actors rarely or never report itemized contributions received or expenditures.

        Sources

        Julián Sosa, Secretary-Treasurer at the High Court of Electoral Justice, August 6, 2014, Asunción / Phone interview

        Anonymous source who was part of an electoral campaign of one of the major parties, July 21, 2014, Asunción / In person interview.

        Semillas para la Democracia. “¿Cuánto cuestan las elecciones? How much do elections cost?“. Final report of the Electoral Watch Project - Proyecto Mirador Electoral. Pgs. 10, 13, 18. Accessed on July 14, 2014 at http://www.semillas.org.py/wp-content/uploads/2013/10/Informe-Final-Proyecto-Mirador-Electoral.pdf

        “Partidos violan ley electoral sobre propaganda, afirman“. ABC Color. March 21, 2013. http://www.abc.com.py/edicion-impresa/politica/partidos-violan-ley-electoral-sobre-propaganda-afirman-551785.html

        “Partidos políticos gastaron US$ 20 millones en propagandas en medios de comunicación“. 5 dias. May 21, 2013. http://5dias.com.py/27358-partidos-polticos-gastaron-us-20-millones-en-propagandas-en-medios-de-comunicacin

        Fundación Ñande Paraguay Website. Accessed on August 5, 2014 at http://www.nandeparaguay.org/

        Grupo Cartes Website. Accessed on August 5, 2014. http://www.grupocartes.com.py/?page_id=58

        The names of anonymous sources are known to Global Integrity and Global Integrity has agreed not to disclose them.

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        36
        Score
        0
        In practice, to what extent can journalists and citizens easily access the financial information of third party actors, including the political spending of those actors in support of political parties and individual candidates?More about indicator

        Access to financial information from third-party actors in Paraguay by citizens or journalists is rarely possible. This information is not publicly available. Neither the Paraguayan Electoral Code not the Political Finance Law regulate the activities of these organizations even though they do exist and operate in favour of certain parties. According to a journalist, “they [foundations] do not report to the oversight authority. It is not possible to access their financial records. They work as if they were private entities“ (Estela Ruiz Diaz, July 24, 2014).

        The most prominent case of an NGO that worked in favour of a presidential candidate in the past national level elections is that of Fundación Ñande Paraguay, linked to the ANR‘s Horacio Cartes. The final report of the Electoral Watch Project regarded this issue as one of the greatest obstacles to achieve political finance transparency. “The High Court of Electoral Justice cannot audit private organisations as long as their contributions, in the context of electoral campaigns, are not included as part of electoral campaign expenses [...] Fundación Ñande Paraguay clearly influenced elections through advertising campaigns“. The report specified that this entity financed the work of improving the public image of the candidate by positioning him as a successful businessman through propaganda (Pg. 10, July 14, 2014). Currently, the website of the foundation does not disclose any type of financial information, and the land phone no longer works for assistance (August 5, 2014).

        Scoring Criteria

        A 100 score is earned where: 1) all relevant financial information is freely available online or in hard copy at the cost of photocopying, 2) it can be obtained within two days of requesting it, and 3) it is in a machine readable format (for example in csv or xml format).

        A 50 score is earned where: 1) information is available but in some cases is incomplete or lacking detail, 2) obtaining complete information takes up to a month, or 3) it's not necessarily in machine readable format.

        A 0 score is earned where: 1) the information is not publicly available, or 2) obtaining it takes more than three months, or 3) the cost of obtaining it is prohibitive for the regular citizen.

        Sources

        Estela Ruiz Diaz, Journalist at Ultima Hora Newspaper, July 24, 2014, Asunción / In person interview

        Semillas para la Democracia. “¿Cuánto cuestan las elecciones? How much do elections cost?“. Final report of the Electoral Watch Project - Proyecto Mirador Electoral. Pgs. 10, 13, 18. Accessed on July 14, 2014 at http://www.semillas.org.py/wp-content/uploads/2013/10/Informe-Final-Proyecto-Mirador-Electoral.pdf

        “Partidos violan ley electoral sobre propaganda, afirman“. ABC Color. March 21, 2013. http://www.abc.com.py/edicion-impresa/politica/partidos-violan-ley-electoral-sobre-propaganda-afirman-551785.html

        “Partidos políticos gastaron US$ 20 millones en propagandas en medios de comunicación“. 5 dias. May 21, 2013. http://5dias.com.py/27358-partidos-polticos-gastaron-us-20-millones-en-propagandas-en-medios-de-comunicacin

        Fundación Ñande Paraguay Website. Accessed on August 5, 2014 at http://www.nandeparaguay.org/

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        Open Question: Please describe how third party-actors (even if they are not regulated by your country's laws) obtain contributions and spend in support of political parties and/or individual candidates.More about indicator

        Non-profit organizations such as foundations are the most common type of third-party actors in Paraguay that work to support political parties and influence their electoral campaigns. These entities are not regulated by the country‘s laws, thus it is hard to provide a list of well-identified third-party actors or to learn about their expenditures and how they are managed during the electoral season.

        However, a number of third-party actors can be singled out, such as Fundación Ñande Paraguay, which has been explicitly associated to the Colorado Party‘s presidential candidate Horacio Cartes, or Fundación Jerovia, which has carried out workshops with the Frente Guasu Alliance, or Fundación Libertad, closely associated to the Liberal Party and specifically to Alfredo Jaeggli, a former senator of the same party.

        In general, third-party actors serve to spread a party‘s platform through conferences, workshops, working groups, rallies, or raise funds by requesting aid from international organisations, and in some cases, keep some of the parties‘ financial transactions out of reach from the oversight authority. According to an anonymous source with expertise in the subject, “the purpose of these organizations is precisely to cover up electoral finances“ (July 21, 2014).

        The importance of these actors appears to be relative. For instance, Ricardo Canese, former campaign manager for the Frente Guasu Alliance, considers that the expenses or contributions of these entities are insignificant. “Their contributions and expenditures probably represent no more than 1% of an elections‘ budget“, he claims (July 15, 2014). However, cases like Fundación Ñande Paraguay prove that they can also play a crucial role in campaigns.

        Fundación Ñande Paraguay clearly influenced the electoral campaign of former Colorado Party‘s candidate Horacio Cartes by circumventing the law. “This foundation [Fundación Ñande Paraguay] easily operated without restrictions or auditing to the benefit of Cartes“ (academic who requested anonymity, July 21, 2014). The final report of the Electoral Watch Project regarded this issue as one of the greatest obstacles to achieve political finance transparency. “The High Court of Electoral Justice cannot audit private organisations as long as their contributions, in the context of electoral campaigns, are not included as part of electoral campaign expenses [...] Fundación Ñande Paraguay clearly influenced elections through advertising campaigns“. Furthermore, the report specified that this entity financed the work of improving the public image of the candidate by positioning him as a successful businessman through propaganda outside of the legal time-period (Pg. 10, July 14, 2014).

        Scoring Criteria

        To answer this question please: 1) list the types of third-party actors that exist in your country and describe how they work to influence campaigns, 2) explain how important such actors are or not in the context of campaigns, including whether their expenditures are substantial in relation to that of political parties and individual candidates, and 3) if documented evidence indicates they circumvent laws intended to regulate political finance, please explain how and include references to the evidence.

        Sources

        Semillas para la Democracia. “¿Cuánto cuestan las elecciones? How much do elections cost?“. Final report of the Electoral Watch Project - Proyecto Mirador Electoral. Pgs. 10, 13, 18. Accessed on July 14, 2014 at http://www.semillas.org.py/wp-content/uploads/2013/10/Informe-Final-Proyecto-Mirador-Electoral.pdf

        Ricardo Canese, Parlamentarian for Mercosur, Frente Guasu Headquarters, July 15, 2014, Asunción / In person interview

        Romy Fischer, Projects Coordinator at NGO Semillas para la Democracia, Semillas para la Democracia Headquarters, July 16, 2014, Asunción / In person interview

        Anonymous source who was part of an electoral campaign of one of the major parties, July 21, 2014, Asunción / In person interview.

        “Partidos violan ley electoral sobre propaganda, afirman“. ABC Color. March 21, 2013. http://www.abc.com.py/edicion-impresa/politica/partidos-violan-ley-electoral-sobre-propaganda-afirman-551785.html

        Fundación Ñande Paraguay Website. Accessed on August 5, 2014 at http://www.nandeparaguay.org/

        The names of anonymous sources are known to Global Integrity and Global Integrity has agreed not to disclose them.

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    Monitoring and Enforcement

    More about category
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      Monitoring Capabilities
      More about category
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        YES
        In law, political finance information is monitored by an independent oversight authority.More about indicator

        Political finance information is monitored by an oversight authority that does not depend on the Executive or Legislative branches.The National Constitution grants this power to the Electoral Justice in art. 273: “[The acts of] convening, judging, organizing, directing, supervising and monitoring all acts and matters related to general, departmental and municipal elections, as well as the rights and titles of those who were elected, are the exclusive jurisdiction of the Electoral Justice. Matters related to popular consultation as well as elections and parties and political movements‘ functioning are also under its jurisdiction“.

        Within the Electoral Justice, the Electoral Supervisors are the figures entrusted with the duty to send cases to public prosecution without approval from the executive or legislative branches. Art. 24 of Law No 635/95 establishes that the obligations of the Supervisors are: “To ensure compliance with the Constitution, the Electoral Code and the Law; to intervene and judge representing the whole of society on electoral matters; to act ex-officio or at the request of a party on electoral misdemeanours; to take part on financial control and auditing of parties, political movements and alliances‘ functioning [...]“.

        Art. 3 of the Political Finance Law, which modifies arts. 66 and 281 of the Paraguayan Electoral Code, specifies that parties, political movements and alliances have to provide financial information annually and during electoral campaigns to the Electoral Justice, more precisely to the Electoral Tribunal and the High Court of Electoral Justice. Art. 66 states: “political parties must turn in their balance, funds‘ inflow and outflow, with an annexed report of received contributions or donations with details of the amounts and their origins to the Electoral Justice High Court [...] within the first ninety days after the fiscal year ended“.

        Art. 281 establishes the following: “Forty days after election day, [parties, political movements and alliances] must turn in documentation of funds‘ inflow and outflow to the Electoral Tribunal, along with an annexed report of all contributions or donations received detailing their origins and amounts. The Electoral Tribunal ought to order their immediate publication on the Website of the High Court of Electoral Justice, freely available for reference, ten days after [the documentation] are received“.

        The same article names the General Comptroller Office as another entity in charge of oversight of financial information. It states that “the Electoral Tribunal will give sixty days to the General Comptroller Office to audit the final accountability reports with ten more days for parties, political movements and alliances to respond to questions [...]“. The General Comptroller Office is an autonomous entity established by the Constitution in charge of monitoring all economic and financial activities of the state.

        Note that law mandates that audits and investigations are activities entrusted to the electoral supervisors, who are organically part of the Public Prosecutor‘s Office. The law does not specify whether they should report back on its findings to the TSJE.

        Scoring Criteria

        A YES score is earned where: 1) an independent oversight authority is mandated to monitor political finance information, and 2) the authority has investigation and audit powers.

        A MODERATE score is earned where the independent oversight authority is mandated to monitor political finance information, but doesn't have investigation or audit powers.

        A NO score is earned where no such law exists.

        Sources

        National Constitution of the Republic of Paraguay. Arts. 273, 274. 1992. http://www.constitution.org/cons/paraguay.htm

        Law No 4743/12 of Political Finance. Art. 3. 2012. http://www.bacn.gov.py/MTE5OA==&ley-n-4743

        Law No 834/96 of the Paraguayan Electoral Code. Arts. 66, 281. 1996. http://www.semillas.org.py/wp-content/uploads/2013/03/Texto-C%C3%B3digo-Electoral-con-Ley-de-Financiamiento-compilado.pdf

        General Comptroller Office. Regulatory Framework, National Constitution. Web. Accessed on August 1, 2014 at http://www.contraloria.gov.py/index.php/la-cgr/marco-normativo/77-constitucion-nacional

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        MODERATE
        In law, high-level appointments to the oversight authority are based on merit.More about indicator

        In law, high-level appointments to the oversight authority, which in Paraguay‘s case is the High Court of Electoral Justice TSJE, are based on merit, but regulations do not forbid appointments involving conflict of interests nor is a public process for the appointments envisaged by law. The National Constitution establishes in art. 275 that members of TSJE need to fullfill the following requisites: “have to be of Paraguayan nationality, be 35 years of age, have earned a degree in Law, and for ten years at least, have effectively exercised the profession, or have served in the judicial magistracy or an university chair in matters related to law, altogether, separately or alternatively“. No reference is made to conflict of interests or biases.

        In regards to the appointment process, art. 275 states that three members of the oversight authority “will be elected and removed in the same manner as the ministers of the Supreme Court of Justice“. Art. 258 of the National Constitution, however, does not specify how the ministers of the Supreme Court ought to be elected.

        Scoring Criteria

        A YES score is earned where: 1) high-level appointments must be based on merit in a public appointment process; and 2) appointees must be free of conflicts of interest due to personal loyalties, family connections, political party affiliations, business partners or other biases.

        A MODERATE score is earned where high-level appointments must be based on merit in a public appointment process, but the regulations don't forbid appointments involving conflicts of interest or other biases.

        A NO score is earned where no such law exists.

        Sources

        National Constitution of Paraguay. Arts. 258, 275. 1992. http://www.constitution.org/cons/paraguay.htm

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        0
        In practice, to what extent are high-level appointments to the oversight authority based on merit?More about indicator

        Appointments to the oversight authority in Paraguay are never carried out through a public competition process, and appointees are rarely selected without conflicts of interests or biases. Romy Fischer explains that members of the High Court of Electoral Justice TSJE are elected based on “cupos políticos“ or political quotas. This means that they are loyal or represent political parties (July 16, 2014).

        An anonymous source who was part of an electoral campaign of one of the major parties further elaborates on the logic behind the appointment procedure: “Appointees are never elected based on merit. When the law was created, the Electoral Board, which was the institution that would become the High Court of Electoral Justice, was mainly controlled by the Colorado Party [ANR]. So there had to be equilibrium, we needed to compensate. [It was thought] that we should let other parties put their people as well. We designed a three members‘ system: one member proposed by the Colorado Party, one member from the opposition, and a third member of mutual agreement, that would help solve disputes in case they would arise“ (July 21, 2014).

        In fact, Ricardo Canese, parlamentarian for Mercosur and former campaign manager of the Frente Guasu alliance, claims that the principle of “plurality“ has been violated with the new appointments that took place recently at TSJE. “The third member of TSJE had to be one from Frente Guasu. Before it was someone from Partido Encuentro Nacional PEN or UNACE“. Before the national elections took place, the former presidential candidate for Frente Guasu publicly demanded that the third member of TSJE be the lawyer Emilio Camacho (February 8, 2013).

        In August 9, 2013, the Senate picked two new members to the oversight authority in a closed parliamentary session. Journalists, graphic reporters and others were forced to leave the room where senators would discuss the appointments. According to media, “the session rendered no surprises“, with the election of Maria Elena Wapenka and Jaime Bestard, each one associated with Partido Encuentro Nacional and the Colorado Party respectively (ABC Color, August 9, 2013).

        Scoring Criteria

        A 100 score is earned where: 1) there is an advertised competition and public vetting process, 2) candidates with the most merit and without conflicts of interest or other biases are appointed.

        A 50 score is earned where the public competition is usually advertised and the vetting process public, but exceptions exist. A 50 score is also earned where candidates with the most merit and without conflicts of interest or other biases are appointed but exceptions exist.

        A 0 score is earned where there's rarely or never a public competition, or appointees are rarely selected on merit or without conflicts of interest or other biases.

        Sources

        Anonymous source who was part of an electoral campaign of one of the major parties, July 21, 2014, Asunción / In person interview.

        Romy Fischer, Projects Coordinator at NGO Semillas para la Democracia, Semillas para la Democracia Headquarters, July 16, 2014, Asunción / In person.

        Ricardo Canese, Parlamentarian for Mercosur, Frente Guasu Headquarters, July 15, 2014, Asunción / In person interview

        “Eligen a Wapenka y Bestard para el TSJE mediante el ‘pacto azulgrana“. ABC Color. August 9, 2013. http://www.abc.com.py/edicion-impresa/politica/eligen-a-wapenka-y-bestard-para-el-tsje-mediante-el-pacto-azulgrana-604899.html

        “FG exige el cupo en el ente electoral y tilda de golpistas a ministros“. Ultima Hora. February 8, 2013. http://www.ultimahora.com/fg-exige-el-cupo-el-ente-electoral-y-tilda-golpistas-ministros-n598965.html

        The names of anonymous sources are known to Global Integrity and Global Integrity has agreed not to disclose them.

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        MODERATE
        In law, the independence of high-level appointees is guaranteed.More about indicator

        In law, the independence of members of the High Court of Electoral Justice is moderately guaranted. Security of tenure is granted according to art. 275 of the Constitution, which establishes the same removal process as for the members of the Supreme Court of Justice in art. 261 of the National Constitution: “[The members of the High Court of Electoral Justice] will finish their mandate at the age of seventy five“. Members could also be removed via impeachment, but there is no reference to an independent oversight authority in charge of such a procedure.

        Appointees are the highest authority in all matters related to elections. Law No 635/95 states that “The High Court of Electoral Justice will be responsible for the direction and auditing of the electoral register and the administration of the financial resources assigned by the Finance Ministry“.

        Article 24 reiterates this power, as does Article 3 of the Political Finance Law.

        Scoring Criteria

        A YES score is earned where: 1) appointees have the authority or mandate to review cases and issue decisions, 2) the law establishes security of tenure, and 3) removal or disciplinary actions are based on due process conducted by a peer panel or independent oversight body.

        A MODERATE score is earned where appointees have the authority or mandate to review cases and issue decisions, BUT one of the second two conditions mentioned in the YES criteria is not met.

        A NO score is earned where no such law exists.

        Sources

        National Constitution of Paraguay. Arts. 261, 275. 1992. http://www.constitution.org/cons/paraguay.htm

        Law No 635/95 “that regulates the Electoral Justice“. Art. 5. 1995. http://tsje.gov.py/composicion.html

        Law No 4743 of Political Finance. Art. 3. 2012. http://www.bacn.gov.py/MTE5OA==&ley-n-4743

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        0
        In practice, to what extent is the independence of high-level appointees guaranteed?More about indicator

        High-level appointees of the oversight authority are rarely independent. They often operate favouring major political parties. Ricardo Canese explains: “What is guaranteed is the dependence [of high-level appointees] to the political parties from which they come from, since that is the way they manage to get elected“ (July 15, 2014). Similarly, Romy Fischer suggests that members of the High Court of Electoral Justice are appointed via “cupos políticos“ or political quotas, meaning that they are fundamentally loyal to parties (July 16, 2014).

        A current academic and former campaign official for Alianza Paraguay Alegre explains that when the three-member system of the High Court was designed in the 1990s - whereby one member would be proposed by the Colorado Party, the other one by the Liberal Party, and the third would be of mutual agreement between the parties -, there was still an expectation of honorability on the part of the appointees. “However, that has changed now. Appointees have entirely degraded the system“ (July 21, 2014).

        A case in point took place in the last national elections that brought to light the questionable integrity and independence of Juan Manuel Morales, then member of the High Court. At noon during election day, Morales appeared on television to announce that “liberales“ (members of the PLRA Party) would have to accept the results of the elections, since the Colorado Party‘s presidential candidate Horacio Cartes had a clear advantage over the PLRA‘s candidate at that time of the day (ABC Color, April 21, 2013). His declaration not only violated exit polls restrictions, but also demonstrated the partiality of a member of the High Court. Morales was sanctioned with a prohibition to take part in the judgement process and in announcement of the winners of the elections (ABC Color, April 24, 2013).

        Scoring Criteria

        A 100 score is earned where all of the following conditions are met: 1) appointees review cases and issue decisions without fear or favor from other branches of government, and 2) appointees are granted security of tenure and 3) no appointees are removed, disciplined or transferred without due process by a peer panel or independent oversight body.

        A 50 score is earned where any of the following conditions apply: 1) appointees generally operate without fear or favor from other branches of government but exceptions exist, or 2) some but not all appointees are granted security of tenure, or 3) appointees are occasionally removed, disciplined or transferred without due process by a peer panel or independent oversight body.

        A 0 score is earned where at least one of the following conditions apply: 1) appointees operate with fear or favor from other branches of government, or 2) are not granted security of tenure, or 3) are usually removed, disciplined or transferred without observing due process by a peer panel or independent oversight body.

        Sources

        Romy Fischer, Projects Coordinator at NGO Semillas para la Democracia, Semillas para la Democracia Office, Asunción, Personal Interview. July 16, 2014

        Ricardo Canese, Parliamentarian for Mercosur, Frente Guasu Headquarters, Asunción, Personal Interview. July 15, 2014

        Anonymous source who was part of an electoral campaign of one of the major parties, July 21, 2014, Asunción / In person interview.

        “Morales dispara contra liberales“. ABC Color. April 21, 2013. http://www.abc.com.py/nacionales/polemicas-declaraciones-del-vicepresidente-del-tsje-563399.html

        “Morales queda fuera de juzgamiento de actas“. ABC Color. April 24, 2013. http://www.abc.com.py/nacionales/apartan-de-juzgamiento-a-morales-564752.html

        The names of anonymous sources are known to Global Integrity and Global Integrity has agreed not to disclose them.

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        Open Question: How does decision-making work in the oversight authority?More about indicator

        The oversight authority, the High Court of Electoral Justice (TSJE) is made up of three members: a president, a vice-president and a member. In order to take decisions, two out of the three of them have to agree (Romy Fischer, July 16, 2014). Their positions are held annually. Law No 635/95, art. 5 establishes that “the High Court of Electoral Justice is the supreme authority in electoral matters and that its resolutions could only be challenged by an action of unconstitutionality“. The same law also states that TSJE is responsible for the direction and auditing of the electoral register and the management of resources assigned in the general budget for electoral purposes. These tasks are carried out by the authority.

        According to a current academic, the decision making process is essentially tied to political interests. “The three member system is designed so that there will be one member proposed by the party-in-power, one member from the opposition, and a third member of mutual agreement, that would help solve disputes in case they would arise“ (July 21, 2014). Romy Fischer adds that members of the High Court of Electoral Justice are appointed via “cupos políticos“ or political quotas, meaning that they are fundamentally loyal to parties (July 16, 2014).

        The decision-making process has been qualified as politicized from the very election of the members of the oversight authority. Ricardo Canese, parlamentarian for Mercosur and former campaign manager of the Frente Guasu alliance, claims that the principle of “plurality“ has been violated with the new appointments that took place recently at TSJE (July 15, 2014). Some newspapers suggested that the appointment of Jaime Bestard and Elena Wapenka to the oversight authority was the result of a political agreement between the Colorado and Liberal parties (La Nación, August 9, 2013).

        Scoring Criteria

        Please describe: 1) the composition of the decision-making body within the oversight authority, 2) the type of decisions it's allowed to make and makes in practice, and 3) in which cases majority is required. If there have been well substantiated complaints about the decision-making process being ineffective or politicized please explain.

        Sources

        Anonymous source who was part of an electoral campaign of one of the major parties, July 21, 2014, Asunción / In person interview.

        Romy Fischer, Projects Coordinator at NGO Semillas para la Democracia, Semillas para la Democracia Headquarters, July 16, 2014, Asunción / In person interview

        Ricardo Canese, Parlamentarian for Mercosur, Frente Guasu Headquaerters, July 15, 2014, Asunción / In person interview

        “El Senado cumple pacto ‘azulgrana‘ y elige a Wapenka y Bestard para el TSJE“. La Nación. August 9, 2013. http://www.lanacion.com.py/articulo/136804--el-senado-cumple-pacto-azulgrana-y-elige-a-wapenka-y-bestard-para-el-tsje.html

        “Composición del TSJE“. Tribunal Superior de Justicia Electoral Website / High Court of Electoral Justice Website. Accessed on August, 5, 2014 at http://tsje.gov.py/composicion.html

        The names of anonymous sources are known to Global Integrity and Global Integrity has agreed not to disclose them.

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        100
        In practice, to what extent does the authority have sufficient capacity to monitor political finance regulations?More about indicator

        The Electoral Justice has sufficient budget and staff to review and monitor all incoming reports. The entity is run by 4,300 public servants approximately, and it is one of the few offices that has managed to trim down its budget in 2014 by 19% (Paraguay.com, September 30, 2013). Ruiz Diaz emphasises this point: “The Electoral Justice is by far one of the most well-budgeted institutions in Paraguay. It is rare to see an institution willing to receive less financial resources, and the Electoral Justice is one those that has had the capacity to do so“ (July 24).

        The entity has reviewed the parties‘ financial reports from the last national elections. It issued comments and suggestions over the quality of the documents that parties turned in their accountability reports (ABC Color, August 21, 2013). However, no evidence shows that parties had to follow the entity‘s recommendations. In any case, if the Electoral Justice fails to monitor and review all incoming reports properly is a matter of political willingness. “They do not want to antagonize political parties, so they do not proceed with a throughout review, as they should“ (Interviewee who requested anonymity, July 30, 2014). According to Fischer, “they |Electoral Justice workers| sometimes allege that they cannot review all documents properly because there is not an standardised format. However, this would not be an issue should they enforce legislation properly, which they can“ (July 16, 2014).

        Scoring Criteria

        A 100 score is earned where: 1) the authority has sufficient budget to monitor all incoming reports, and 2) it has sufficient staff to review all incoming reports.

        A 50 score is earned where: 1) the authority has insufficient budget to monitor all incoming reports, or 2) its staff can only review half of all incoming reports.

        A 0 score is earned where: 1) the authority can't fulfill most of its essential functions due to budget constraints, or 2) its staff only has the capacity to review 25% or less of all incoming reports.

        Sources

        Anonymous source who was part of an electoral campaign of one of the major parties, July 21, 2014, Asunción / In person interview.

        Romy Fischer, Projects Coordinator at NGO Semillas para la Democracia, Semillas para la Democracia Headquarters, July 16, 2014, Asunción / In person interview

        Estela Ruiz Diaz, Journalist at Ultima Hora Newspaper, July 24, 2014, Asunción / In person.

        “ANR dice que gastó en comicios solo US$ 8,7 millones y PLRA casi el doble“. ABC Color. August 21, 2013. http://www.abc.com.py/edicion-impresa/politica/anr-dice-que-gasto-en-comicios-solo-us-87-millones-y-plra-casi-el-doble-609066.html

        “TSJE propone reducir 19% su presupuesto para el próximo año“. Paraguay.com. September 30, 2013. http://www.paraguay.com/nacionales/tsje-propone-reducir-19-su-presupuesto-para-el-proximo-ano-97578

        The names of anonymous sources are known to Global Integrity and Global Integrity has agreed not to disclose them.

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        0
        In practice, to what extent does the authority conduct investigations or audits when necessary?More about indicator

        No evidence has shown that the authority has conducted investigations or audits. The High Court of Electoral Justice TSJE has issued observations, comments and suggestions over the financial documentation that parties turned in after national elections. For instance, 33% of Alianza Paraguay Alegre‘s documents received feedback from TSJE, and 19% in the case of the Colorado Party (ANR). Partido Encuentro Nacional PEN had 88% of its documentation with remarks from the oversight authority. TSJE‘s management director explained that most of the observations had to do with irregularities that the documents had, such as amendments. However, he explained that only electoral prosecutors could provide recommendations of sanctions in these cases (ABC Color, August 21, 2013).

        Rubén Ocampos, former campaign manager of the Alianza Paraguay Alegre, could not recall any instances when the TSJE carried out investigations into finance matters in the last elections (July 21, 2014). Similarly, Romy Fischer said that in spite of the large proportion of observations that TSJE issued over the financial reports, no audits took place as they should have (July 16, 2015).

        Scoring Criteria

        A 100 score is earned where the authority conducted at least three investigations or audits during the most recent electoral campaign.

        A 50 score is earned where the authority conducted at least one investigation or audit during the most recent electoral campaign.

        A 0 score is earned where the authority didn't conduct any investigation or audit during the most recent electoral campaign.

        Sources

        Romy Fischer, Projects Coordinator at NGO Semillas para la Democracia, Semillas para la Democracia Headquarters, July 16, 2014, Asunción/In person interview.

        Rubén Ocampos, Private Lawyer, July 21, 2014 / Email

        “ANR dice que gastó en comicios solo US$ 8,7 millones y PLRA casi el doble“. ABC Color. August 21, 2013. http://www.abc.com.py/edicion-impresa/politica/anr-dice-que-gasto-en-comicios-solo-us-87-millones-y-plra-casi-el-doble-609066.html

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        0
        In practice, to what extent does the authority publish the results of investigations or audits?More about indicator

        The results of investigations or audits beyond an initial compliance review or administrative audit are not available to the public. The High Court of Electoral Justice TSJE has issued observations, comments and suggestions over the financial documentation that parties turned in after national elections. For instance, 33% of Alianza Paraguay Alegre‘s documents received feedback from TSJE, and 19% in the case of the Colorado Party (ANR). Partido Encuentro Nacional PEN had 88% of its documentation remarked upon by the oversight authority. TSJE‘s management director explained that most of the observations had to do with irregularities that the documents had, such as amendments. However, he explained that only electoral prosecutors could provide recommendations of sanctions in these cases (ABC Color, August 21, 2013). There is no available evidence that investigations have taken place beyond this point.

        Rubén Ocampos, former campaign manager of the Alianza Paraguay Alegre, could not recall any instances when the TSJE carried forward investigations over finance in the last elections (July 21, 2014). Similarly, Romy Fischer said that in spite of the large proportion of observations that TSJE issued over the financial reports, no audits took place as they should have (July 16, 2015).

        Scoring Criteria

        A 100 score is earned where the authority publishes reports of all its investigations or audits a month or less after their conclusion.

        A 50 score is earned where reports are available to the public more than a month after the conclusion of the investigation or audit.

        A 0 score is earned where reports are not available to the public or they become available after six months or more after conclusion of the investigation or audit. A 0 score is also earned where only summaries of the reports are publicly available.

        Sources

        Romy Fischer, Projects Coordinator at NGO Semillas para la Democracia, Semillas para la Democracia Headquarters, July 16, 2014, Asunción/In person interview.

        Rubén Ocampos, Private Lawyer, July 21, 2014 / Email

        “ANR dice que gastó en comicios solo US$ 8,7 millones y PLRA casi el doble“. ABC Color. August 21, 2013. http://www.abc.com.py/edicion-impresa/politica/anr-dice-que-gasto-en-comicios-solo-us-87-millones-y-plra-casi-el-doble-609066.html

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      Enforcement Capabilities
      More about category
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        47
        Score
        YES
        In law, there are sanctions in response to political finance violations.More about indicator

        Violations and sanctions in regards to political finance are established in art. 3 of the Political Finance Law, which modifies arts. 281, 330 and 336 of the Paraguayan Electoral Code. Art. 281 states that campaign managers‘ failure to turn in proper accountability documentation (funds‘ inflow and outflow) after national level elections have taken place to the Electoral Tribunal “will result in suspension of contribution, subsidies or subvention on the part of the State for up to three years and two elections, according to each individual case“.

        Art. 330 specifies the following: “The campaign manager or the party‘s competent authority, who, in order to deceive, falsifies or manipulates any of the control mechanisms of the accountability [...], would have committed the punishable act of Production of Public Documents with False Content, under art. 250 of the Penal Code“. Art. 250 of the Penal Code establishes prison sentences of five to ten years for this violation.

        Art. 336 refers to violations of contributions or donations‘ prohibitions provided in articles 68 and 282 of the Political Finance Law. According to it, “whoever infringes upon the prohibitions and restrictions provided in articles 68 and 282 of the [Paraguayan Electoral] Code when making donations or contributions to parties, political movements and alliances, will be sanctioned with a fine equivalent to triple the amount of the given contribution. The party, political movement and alliance which has benefited from such contribution or donation, will be sanctioned with an equivalent fine and will lose the right to receive up to fifty percent (50%) of state subsidies or contributions for one to three years“

        Scoring Criteria

        A YES score is earned where: 1) the law clearly defines violations of political finance laws, and 2) there are clearly defined sanctions for specific violations.

        A MODERATE score is earned where violations are clearly defined but sanctions for specific violations are not.

        A NO score is earned where no such law exists.

        Sources

        Law No 4743 of Political Finance. Art. 3. 2012. http://www.bacn.gov.py/MTE5OA==&ley-n-4743

        Law No 834/96 of the Paraguayan Electoral Code. Arts. 281, 330, 336. 1996. http://www.semillas.org.py/wp-content/uploads/2013/03/Texto-C%C3%B3digo-Electoral-con-Ley-de-Financiamiento-compilado.pdf

        Law No 1160/97 of the Penal Code. Art. 250. 1997. http://www.mre.gov.py/v1/adjuntos/privacidad/ley1160.pdf

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        YES
        In law, the oversight authority has the power to impose sanctions.More about indicator

        The National Constitution grants the power to impose sanctions independently to the Electoral Justice in art. 273: “[The acts of] convening, judging, organizing, directing, supervising and monitoring all acts and matters related to general, departmental and municipal elections, as well as the rights and titles of those who were elected, are the exclusive jurisdiction of the Electoral Justice. Matters related to popular consultation as well as elections and parties and political movements‘ functioning are also under its jurisdiction“.

        Within the Electoral Justice, the Electoral Supervisors are the figures entrusted with the duty to send cases to public prosecution without approval from the executive or legislative branches. Art. 24 of Law No 635/95 establishes that the obligations of the Supervisors are: “To ensure compliance with the Constitution, the Electoral Code and the Law; to intervene and judge representing the whole of society on electoral matters; to act ex-officio or at the request of a party on electoral misdemeanours; to take part on financial control and auditing of parties, political movements and alliances‘ functioning [...]“.

        Scoring Criteria

        A YES score is earned where: 1) the oversight authority has the power to impose sanctions, and 2) it can directly prosecute violators before the courts or is independent to send cases to public prosecution.

        A MODERATE score is earned where the oversight authority has the power to impose sanctions, but it can't directly prosecute violators before the courts or is not independent to send cases to public prosecution.

        A NO score is earned where no such law exists.

        Sources

        National Constitution of Paraguay. Art. 273. 1992. http://www.constitution.org/cons/paraguay.htm

        Law No 635/95 “that regulates the Electoral Justice“. Arts. 21, 24. 1995. http://tsje.gov.py/fiscalias-electorales.html

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        0
        In practice, to what extent do offenders comply with sanctions imposed?More about indicator

        Since sanctions are rarely or never imposed when political finance violations are committed, it is hard to judge whether offenders comply or not. “For years, the Electoral Justice has shown proof that it lacks will when it comes to controlling the use of money that parties and political movements receive in the form of contributions and subsidies“, argues Rolón Luna (pg. 15, 2013).

        If observations are issued by the oversight authority in regards to financial reports or financial activities, there is no evidence that parties, political movements or alliances have proceeded to change. For instance, 33% of Alianza Paraguay Alegre‘s documents received feedback from TSJE, and 19% in the case of the Colorado Party (ANR). Partido Encuentro Nacional PEN had 88% of its documentation with remarks from the oversight authority. TSJE‘s management director explained that most of the observations had to do with irregularities that the documents had, such as amendments (Electoral Watch Project, July 14, 2014). However, he explained that only electoral prosecutors could provide recommendations of sanctions in these cases (ABC Color, August 21, 2013). In spite of the relatively high level of observations, parties still received electoral subsidies and contributions from TSJE (Romy Fischer, July 16, 2014/ ABC Color, July 14, 2014).

        Scoring Criteria

        A 100 score is earned where: 1) offenders comply with the sanctions imposed without exception, and 2) they are not repeat offenders.

        A 50 score is earned where: 1) offenders usually comply with the sanctions imposed but exceptions exist, or 2) most are not repeat offenders but some exceptions exist.

        A 0 score is earned where: 1) offenders rarely comply with the sanctions imposed, or 2) most are repeat offenders.

        Sources

        Jorge Rolón Luna. “La nueva Ley de financiación de partidos políticos. El dinero en la política“. Semillas para la Democracia, Asunción, 2013.

        Semillas para la Democracia. “¿Cuánto cuestan las elecciones? How much do elections cost?“. Final report of the Electoral Watch Project - Proyecto Mirador Electoral. Pgs. 10, 13, 18. Accessed on July 14, 2014 at http://www.semillas.org.py/wp-content/uploads/2013/10/Informe-Final-Proyecto-Mirador-Electoral.pdf

        Romy Fischer, Projects Coordinator at NGO Semillas para la Democracia, Semillas para la Democracia Headquarters, July 16, 2014. Personal Interview

        “Partidos recibieron Gs. 10 mil millones de subsidio y aporte“. Ultima Hora. July 13, 2014. http://www.ultimahora.com/partidos-recibieron-g-10-mil-millones-subsidio-y-aporte-n811589.htm

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        Open Question: How strong is enforcement, and what impedes more effective enforcement?More about indicator

        The main conditions that prevent effective enforcement of political finance regulations are the lack of political independence of the members at the oversight authority, weak norms and the emergence of new funding strategies for electoral campaigns that effectively circumvent monitoring.

        “For years, the Electoral Justice has shown proof that it lacks will when it comes to controlling the use of money that parties and political movements receive in the form of contributions and subsidies“, argues Rolón Luna (pg. 15, 2013). In fact, technicians at the oversight authority sought to discredit the Law No 4743/12 “That Regulates Political Finance“ by questioning its effectiveness (ABC Color, October 24, 2013). Furthermore, the Electoral Justice refused to abide by that law during the last national-level elections, arguing that it was inapplicable at that time, even though the law was passed in 2012 (Rolón Luna, pg. 16, 2013).

        Political influence is an obstacle to effective enforcement. The entity in charge of applying the law is politically controlled by the parties that are precisely the ones that violate the law. If sanctions exist, they are not imposed. The authorities have all the incentives to avoid the imposition of sanctions (academic who requested anonymity, July 21, 2014). Romy Fischer also considers that sanctions are weak or inapplicable. In worse cases, some norms prohibit some activities without providing sanctions or without laying out proper procedures to sanction violations (July 16, 2014).

        Finally, new extra-party mechanisms for funding have been incorporated, making it harder to monitor political finance activities. “The High Court of Electoral Justice is unable to audit private organizations as long as their expenses are not declared as electoral expenses“ (Electoral Watch Project Final Report, July 14, 2014). For instance, Grupo Cartes, a consortium of private firms linked to the Colorado Party‘s presidential candidate, advertised his work on TV, radio and press months before it was legally allowed to publicise for electoral purposes. These expenses were not included in the official accountability of the party.


        Peer reviewer comment: Agree - The political financing law is still very new, with just one election held since its entry into force in 2012. Even so there is always some doubt that the judges will apply the legally obligated responses to purported violations--the justice system in Paraguay is always under suspicion, and often associated with corruption.

        This new standard should first be applied, after which necessary adjustments can be made. Indeed, Carlos Soler, a former Congressman and one of the promoters of the new law, said the legislation should now be applied to see how it works.

        Scoring Criteria

        Please provide a general explanation of the effectiveness of enforcement, describing: 1) any conditions that may prevent effective enforcement, and 2) explain what are the most urgent areas of reform in the country's political finance system.

        Sources

        Jorge Rolón Luna. “La nueva Ley de financiación de partidos políticos. El dinero en la política“. Semillas para la Democracia, Asunción, 2013.

        Semillas para la Democracia. “¿Cuánto cuestan las elecciones? How much do elections cost?“. Final report of the Electoral Watch Project - Proyecto Mirador Electoral. Pgs. 10, 13, 18. Accessed on July 14, 2014 at http://www.semillas.org.py/wp-content/uploads/2013/10/Informe-Final-Proyecto-Mirador-Electoral.pdf

        Romy Fischer, Projects Coordinator at NGO Semillas para la Democracia, Semillas para la Democracia Headquarters, July 16, 2014. Personal Interview

        Anonymous source who was part of an electoral campaign of one of the major parties, July 21, 2014, Asunción / In person interview.

        “Senador, en compra de votos“. ABC Color. April 18, 2013. http://www.abc.com.py/nacionales/senador-en-compra-de-votos-562183.html

        “La Cámara Alta suspende por 60 días al Senador Ovelar“. Senate Chamber. Web. Accessed on August 3, 2014.http://www.senado.gov.py/index.php/general-hide/46-noticias-tmp/168202-noticia6439

        “La normativa carece de efectividad, dice Ljubetic“. ABC Color. October 24, 2013. http://www.abc.com.py/edicion-impresa/politica/la-normativa-carece-de-efectividad-dice-ljubetic-468774.html

        The names of anonymous sources are known to Global Integrity and Global Integrity has agreed not to disclose them.

        Reviewer's sources: Carlos Soler, personal interview, 24 September, 2014.

Paraguay's electoral system is characterized by a directly elected president, who serves as the head of state, and a bicameral legislature. In presidential campaigns, the candidate receiving the most votes is declared the winner. Presidents serve for one non-renewable five year term. Campaign funds are collected and managed at the party level. Horacio Cartes of the center-right Colorado Party is the current president, having been elected in 2013.

The legislature, or Congress, is made up of the Chamber of Deputies and the Chamber of Senators. The Chamber of Deputies has 80 members, each of which is elected via proportional representation on closed party lists at the provincial level. The 45 Senators are also elected proportionally via closed party lists, and they run on a nationwide basis. Members of both houses are elected for five year terms. Electoral campaigns in both houses are funded and managed at the party level.

The Colorado Party currently controls both houses, while the Radical Liberal Party is the dominant opposition force. Legislative and presidential elections are held concurrently every five years.