First Look

NIA welcomes OCG Report on Spalding Market issue

National Integrity Action Limited | 2013-09-18 00:00:00

NIA, having called on the Office of the Contractor General to “urgently conduct a special, full-scale independent and unbiased investigation” into the Spalding Market issue, commends the Office for its thorough report.

NIA’s stated position has been that where impropriety is established the Member of Parliament, Richard Azan, should either as a matter of conscience and propriety resign or in the absence be fired.

NIA wishes to remind the Honourable Prime Minister and indeed all Jamaica of her public declaration that any member of her team found to be involved in corruption will be dealt with decisively.

The real but far too limited tradition in both political parties, of Ministers resigning in light of established impropriety (Hibbert, Blythe amongst others), must be adhered to in this instance. And in the furtherance of good governance, accountability mechanisms such as a Single Anti-Corruption entity must be implemented and strengthened. 

To this end, the NIA supports the recommendations of the Contractor General that “an accountability framework be created and implemented to clearly outline the reporting relationships and obligations of Officers at the Parish Councils” and that “there be an absolute separation of the responsibilities of the Members of Parliament in regard to the identification and/or approval of projects which are to be undertaken in their Constituency and the selection and/or approval of Contractors to execute the identified works,” with appropriate checks and balances in place in events that absolute separation is not feasible.

We would like to urge Minister Arscott that he immediately embarks on a comprehensive training programme in corporate governance for all councillors, mayors and members of staff of the various Parish Councils and Parish Development Committees.

NIA stands ready to assist in training and in whatever way we can.


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