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OAS ANTI-CORRUPTION MECHANISM ADOPTS GRENADA REPORT
Within the Framework of the Fourth Round, the Committee of Experts of the MESICIC, during its Twenty-Fourth Meeting, held from September 8 to 12, 2014, adopted the report on Grenada by consensus, following a examination of the information provided by that country, as well as that gathered during an on-site visit carried out from April 22 to 24 of this year. This visit comprised of members of the review subgroup, Colombia and United States, with the support of the General Secretariat of the OAS, and meetings were held with Grenadian authorities as well as with representatives of civil society organizations and the private sector. The following aspects of the report are highlighted:
First, some of the recommendations formulated for its consideration, with respect to the oversight bodies selected by Grenada to be examined in the Fourth Round, are as follows:
Integrity Commission (IC): specify its functions vis-à-vis those of the Public Service Commission with respect to disciplinary oversight of public servants; adopt a Code of Conduct and other regulations provided for under the Integrity in Public Life Act; determine the scope of the IC’s role in reviewing asset disclosure statements; adopt coordination and support mechanisms with other bodies; implement a merit-based selection system, a disciplinary system, and a training plan for its staff; post a copy of its annual activities report and information on its mission, tasks, and activities on the government’s website; ensure timely delivery of the resources the IC needs to discharge its functions; adopt a follow-up mechanism that enables the IC to ascertain the outcomes of investigations into cases of wrongdoing brought to the attention of the competent authorities; and develop statistical data on the results of its work in order to identify challenges and recommend, where appropriate, corrective measures.
Public Service Commission (PSC): update the regulations that govern it; standardize its disciplinary oversight functions with those of the IC and adopt coordination mechanisms with other bodies; implement the measures necessary to enable it to have timely and relevant information regarding the conduct of public servants provided by those required to do so; adopt the measures necessary to revive the network of public servants responsible for personnel management, implement the counseling program for public servants provided for under its 2013-2015 Corporate Plan, and conclude the systemization of its operations; adopt a system for publishing government job openings that is user-friendly for the public; post a copy of its annual activities report and information on its mission, tasks, and activities on the government’s website; ensure the PSC receives the resources it needs to discharge its functions; and develop statistical data on the results of the PSC’s work in exercising disciplinary oversight over public servants in order to identify challenges and recommend, where appropriate, corrective measures.
Office of the Director of Public Prosecutions (DPP): adopt the measures necessary to preserve its operational autonomy; adopt coordination measures with other bodies; ensure the timely delivery of the budget resources the DPP needs to discharge its functions; assign a sufficient number of prosecutors and support staff to it and ensure that prosecutors receive periodic training on how to prosecute corrupt acts; implement a system of follow-up for the cases of corruption the DPP initiates that enables it to find out how such cases are proceeding and what the outcomes are; develop and publish statistical data that makes it possible to ascertain clearly which of the cases prosecuted by the DPP are specifically related to corrupt acts as well as the outcomes of such cases, in order to identify challenges and recommend, where appropriate, corrective measures; and disseminate, via the government’s website, information on the DPP’s activities, challenges, and the results of its prosecution of corrupt acts.
Audit Department (AD): adopt the measures necessary to enable it to send its reports, in parallel, to the Minister of Finance and the House of Representatives, and to ensure the effective implementation of the its recommendations; implement coordination mechanisms with other bodies; adopt the measures necessary to ensure that the entities subject to its oversight provide the AD with the information it requests in a timely fashion and maintain the documents necessary for audits; ensure the AD receives the resources it needs to discharge its functions and implement its 2012-2015 Corporate Plan; adopt the measures necessary to enable the AD to select its staff and exercise disciplinary oversight over them; develop and publish statistical data that makes it possible to ascertain whether, as a result of its audits, anything has been detected that could constitute a corrupt act and implement a system to monitor how such cases are being handled by the competent authorities in terms of investigation and punishment – such system should make it possible to find out the outcomes of these cases; and develop statistical data on compensation awarded to the State, in order to identify challenges and recommend, where appropriate, corrective measures.
Second, as a result of the follow-up to the recommendations formulated to Grenada in the First Round, the Committee made a determination as to those which still have to be considered, including, among others, those aimed at the following purposes: strengthening the implementation of the provisions on conflicts of interest and ensuring that the laws on this matter are applicable to all persons performing public functions; strengthening control systems within the public administration by developing enforceable rules that apply to such persons, and that compel them to appropriately use and safeguard the resources allocated to them; strengthening mechanisms that require all public officials to report corrupt acts and providing protection to whistleblowers; considering the publication of asset disclosure statements where appropriate; establishing a enforceable system that ensures access to government information; implementing mechanisms for consultation with civil society and non-governmental organizations and for encouraging their involvement in public management and in the monitoring thereof; determining specific areas that may require technical cooperation support from other States Party to the Convention in order strengthen Grenada’s capacity to prevent, detect, investigate, and punish corrupt acts; and developing procedures and indicators that make it possible to confirm follow-up to the recommendations formulated to Grenada in the First Round.
The report also summarizes the progress made in the implementation of those recommendations, including, passage of the Integrity in Public Life Act of September 2013, which sought, among other things, to implement the provisions of the Inter-American Convention against Corruption, and the “Social Partners Protocol.” In the framework of this Protocol, the government meets with representatives of different social groups and the private sector to address matters of national interest.
In addition to the foregoing, the report highlights the best practices which Grenada provided information. These refer to the IC’s sharing of information with specific groups, including high-level government authorities and bodies and the public at large via the press and television; to the open consultation the PSC held with teacher and public employee unions, which facilitated implementation of the disciplinary system for them; to the electronic circulation of documents by said Commission; to the adoption of a Prosecutor’s Code by the DPP; and to the annual performance report, quality assurance function, and management of working papers within the AD.
During this Twenty Fourth Meeting, similar reports were adopted for Jamaica, Saint Vincent and the Grenadines, Suriname, Belize and Haiti. The Grenada report adopted by the Committee, as well as the aforementioned countries, are available here.
For more information, please visit the Anti-corruption Portal of the Americas.
Edition N° 191 - September 2014
The Mechanism For Follow-up on the
Implementation of the Inter-American
Convention against Corruption, known as MESICIC for its Spanish acronym, is a tool to
support the development of the Inter-American
Convention against Corruption through
cooperation between States Parties.
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