Zero tolerance for corruption – AG warns

DPI, Guyana, Wednesday, November 08, 2017

The government of Guyana has taken a very serious approach to the maintenance of law and order especially in the area of corruption and will not allow it to take up residence in the country.

This is according to Attorney General (AG) and Minister of Legal Affairs Basil Williams who on Wednesday noted government’s zero tolerance for corruption in any form.

Attorney General and Minister of Legal Affairs Basil Williams at the opening of the Anti-corruption seminar held at the Georgetown Club on Wednesday.

Minister Williams was at the time delivering remarks at the opening session of an anti-corruption sensitisation seminar organised by the Ministry of Legal Affairs (MLA) and the Regional Democratic Council (RDC)of Region four. The seminar held at the Georgetown Club, targetted officials of the Mayor and City Council (M&CC), RDC and Neighborhood and Community Development Councils.

The first of its kind, the Legal Affairs Minister said Region four has the largest population of all ten regions in Guyana and the largest number of councillors and staff. He said quite as much money is being pilfered, as is being spent in the region.

“Billions of dollars have been and are being spent in this region as well as millions being leaked, resulting in the stifling of the good life for the people of the region,” he told the confab. Minister Williams said government takes seriously its international commitment to the conventions under corruption and has pledged that the state assets be used for the benefits of all Guyanese.

Representatives of M&CC, Region four RDC and NDC’s.

According to the Minister, forensic audits carried out by the government have resulted in charges being laid against those who have stolen assets belonging to the state.

“It is against this backdrop that our government has provided legislative framework in the fight against corruption.  The State Assets Recovery Act of 2015, SARA, has been passed to pursue civil recovery of state assets.” According to Minister Williams, “this is also in conjunction with respect to the criminal aspect of State Assets being acquired due to the unlawful conduct of officials,” he said.

While the Protected Disclosure (Whistleblower) and the Witness Protection Bills, have been laid in Parliament, they will be read for the first time during the next sitting of the national assembly later this month.

The two bills are to enable fellow employees to feel free and safe to disclose corrupt dealings legally and enjoy the protection of the state.

 

By: Alexis Rodney

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