Jamaica’s Integrity Commission to Become Robust Anti-Corruption Agency

Chairman of the Integrity Commission, retired Justice Karl Harrison (right), responds to a question at a press conference yesterday. Listening are Commissioners, Eric Crawford (left); and Dr Derrick McKoy. (Photo credit: JIS)

KINGSTON, Jamaica, Tuesday May 14, 2109 – Chairman of the Integrity Commission, retired Justice Karl Harrison says Jamaicans can expect a paradigm shift in how the anti-corruption organisation operates.

Speaking at a press conference yesterday, he said the new entity will be “transforming itself to meet the requirements of the modern legislation by which it is governed”.

“It is the vision of the current governance and management apparatus… to transform the Integrity Commission into a robust anti-corruption agency,” Justice Harrison said.

He said focus will be placed on anti-corruption risk management strategies; increasing the confidence of the general public in the government procurement system through public education, transparency and confidence in reporting; and increasing effectiveness and operational efficiency through forging strategic partnerships and employing technological solutions.

The Integrity Commission is mandated to promote and enhance standards of ethical conduct for parliamentarians, public officials and other persons by consolidating laws relating to the prevention of corruption and the award, monitoring and investigating of the government contracts and prescribed licences; and strengthen the measures for the prevention, detection, investigation and prosecution of acts of corruption.

The entity was developed pursuant to Sections 1 and 5 of the Integrity Commission Act, 2017, which allowed the Office of the Contractor General (OCG), the Commission for the Prevention of Corruption (CPC) and the Integrity Commission (Integrity of Parliament Members) (IC), to be fully subsumed into the Integrity Commission.

Justice Harrison said that since its inception in February 2018, the Commission “has continued work that has been undertaken by the legacy agencies, while imparting new activities under the current legislation”.

“We are indeed working, and working very hard at that,” he said.

The entity has completed and submitted six investigation reports to Parliament; monitored in excess of 500 government projects; completed eight enquiry management reports/ position letters; and conducted 69 site visits (between October 2018 and April 2019) and attended 107 site meetings.

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