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IC Vows Zero-tolerance Approach To Public Officials With Outstanding Statutory Declarations | RJR News - Jamaican News Online
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IC vows zero-tolerance approach to public officials with outstanding statutory declarations

By Nakinskie Robinson   
 
The Integrity Commission says it will be taking a zero-tolerance approach to public officials and parliamentarians with outstanding statutory declarations in the first quarter of the 2024/25 financial year.
 
This means anyone who failed to file within the specified period will not receive a written notice to file their statutory declaration within thirty days after being notified, based on the Commission's discretion. Instead, he or she will be referred for prosecution.
 
The Integrity Commission has faced backlash from civil society advocates who argue that it is ineffective in holding delinquent public officials and parliamentarians to account.
 
In its annual report for 2023/24, the Commission also sought to advise officials that electronic mail was not an acceptable modality for the submission of a Statutory Declaration.
 
According to section 43 of the Integrity Commission Act, 2017 it is an offence to file a Statutory Declaration late, make a false Declaration to the Commission in the statutory declaration filing, or fail to provide information upon request to the Director of Information and Complaints.
 
Failure to file a statutory declaration, without reasonable cause, may be punishable by a fine not exceeding $500,000 or to a term of imprisonment not exceeding six months.
 
Meanwhile, the Commission's Integrity and Complaints division says despite an anticipated reduction in the number of statutory declaration filings for 2023/24 it has noted a one percent decline in the compliance rate when compared with the previous period.
 
Parliament last year approved an order to raise the declaration threshold from $3.5 million to $12 million, which saw some 30,000 public sector workers no longer being required to submit new declarations.
 
Of the 88 parliamentarians, 10 submitted their statutory declarations, on or before the August 31, 2023 and March 31, 2024 deadline.
 


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