Prime Minister, the Most Hon. Andrew Holness, has pledged that the new Administration will operate with the highest level of integrity, in order to gain the trust and confidence of the public.
He said that the Government will be tough on corruption, and every elected representative and appointed Minister will participate in sensitisation and public education programmes, to be established by the Integrity Commission.
“This to increase their awareness and understanding of the anti-corruption legislative framework, not just to sensitise them alone but to ensure they are seized of their duties under the law and understand that this will be an accountable government,” he noted.
Mr. Holness, in his first address as Prime Minister, after being sworn into office by Governor-General, His Excellency the Most Hon. Sir Patrick Allen at King’s House on Monday (September 7), said that every member of the Government must be an active agent for the stronger recovery of the economy and society, and must understand that “this mandate is not about them; it is about the people”.
“No princes and princesses were elected; you have no divine right or entitlement. We are all servants of the public good,” he noted.
“There will be those who feel that [having] the majority is basis for arrogance, gives them licence to do as they wish, creates opportunity to pursue their selfish ends and their personal ambition, gives room for complacency and tolerance for errors. Those who hold such views would be sadly mistaken and soon separated,” he warned.
Mr. Holness said that in addition to investigation and prosecution, “we must seek to prevent the occurrence of acts which weaken public trust and damage the integrity of the Government”.
He contended that once the Government has built the confidence of the public that their resources will not be diverted, “that the authority vested in us is not being used to create unfair advantage for others, and there is a sense that the elected officials and public servants act with a high level of integrity”, this will unleash a spirit of public support for government and the State that will make any development plan a success.
The Prime Minister further pointed out that while the Government has “built out a good anticorruption structure” through the Integrity Commission and the Major Organised Crime and Anti-Corruption Agency (MOCA), it is constrained by the need to complete their legislative framework and expand their investigative and prosecutorial resources.
“We will ensure this is completed early in this term,” Mr. Holness assured.