|Listen to Live Jamaican Radio, Listen to Power 106 FM 24x7. Click Here to Listen Free | (Advertisement)|
DPP turns down OCG referral to prosecute entire Cabinet
2013-03-12 13:23:31 | (0 Comments)
The Director of Public Prosecutions (DPP) Paula Llewellyn says her office cannot at this time properly initiate criminal prosecution against any member of the Cabinet or the Cabinet Secretary for their failure to submit certain information to the Office of the Contractor General (OCG).
DPP Paula Llewellyn - File Photo
In a release issued a short while ago, the DPP said she made the decision after closely examining the documentary material provided by the OCG along with 51 exhibits.
She also said the relevant legislation and case law were carefully considered as well as the constitutional position of the Cabinet.
The OCG had referred the entire Cabinet to the DPP for prosecution after it failed to provide information on the granting of approval in relation to three major issues related to infrastructure projects.
They are: the continuation of the North South Link of Highway 2000; the Gordon Cay Container Transshipment Hub; and the establishment of an Oversight Panel to oversee the award of Government contracts.
The DPP says Schedule One of the Constitution speaks to the need for the approval of the Cabinet before the documents pertaining to the Cabinet can be disclosed.
She also pointed to Sections 18 and 19 of the Contractor- General Act which contemplate the disclosure of Cabinet documents to the OCG pursuant to his mandate to monitor and investigate the award of government contracts.
The DPP noted that the Cabinet has not cited prejudice to the security or defence of Jamaica as its reason for not complying with the request of the OCG.
However she says that is not enough for her to make a decision on whether to prosecute.
“Given the constitutional requirement of the approval of the Cabinet for its documents to be released as stated in Schedule 1 of the Constitution, further direction and guidance is needed from the Court (Civil Jurisdiction) as to the procedure to be adopted by the OCG when the Cabinet does not authorize the release of its documents to the OCG, and further, provides no reasons for its non-compliance with the OCG’s requisitions,” Llewellyn said.
She added: “Case law from other jurisdictions suggests that Cabinet ought not be allowed by the Courts to withhold Cabinet documents from inspection without good reason. These authorities are persuasive only and are yet to be tested in our jurisdiction.”
Like our new Facebook page http://www.facebook.com/gleanerjamaica
Follow us on Twitter http://twitter.com/JamaicaGleaner
Source: The Gleaner/Power 106 News
The opinions on this page do not necessarily reflect the views of The Gleaner. The Gleaner reserves the right not to publish comments that may be deemed libelous, derogatory or indecent. To respond to The Gleaner please use the feedback form.
Go- Jamaica: Home | Business Directory | Jobsmart | Chat | Gallery | Videos | Events