JIS News

Prime Minister, the Hon. Bruce Golding, is imploring members of the newly established Independent Commission of Investigations, to be thorough in conducting investigations thereby securing public confidence in the agency.
Mr. Golding gave the admonition as he asked members of the House of Representatives, on Tuesday (November 16), to approve the resolution outlining the compensation package for the Head of the Commission.
“It is important for that office not only to be vigilant, proactive and very meticulous and thorough in its investigations of any alleged abuse by any member of the security forces, but it’s important that the public to be satisfied that those investigations are being pursued with the seriousness that they deserve,” Mr. Golding said.
He also announced that arrangements are being made in the Supplementary Estimates to transfer “some of the resources” allocated to the Bureau of Special Investigation (BSI) to the Commission.
Member of Parliament for Central Kingston, Ronald Thwaites, recommended that a committee of the House of Parliament be created to facilitate monthly updates from the Commission.
“Certainly, in the first instance, in order to earn the credit (of the public) this will be necessary, and it is much better that it passes through the prism of a parliamentary commission, rather than a simple exposure, which maybe complete or not, by the press,” Mr. Thwaites said.
The House approved the resolution outlining the compensation package for the Commissioner, Attorney-at-law Terrence Williams, who is to receive a basic salary of $5.7 million.
“This is not a discretionary fixing of salary. The salary of the Independent Commissioner is prescribed by law, which stipulates that the commissioner must receive a salary no less than that paid to a judge of the Supreme Court,” Mr. Golding explained.
The Commission was created by statute to assume the functions of the Police Public Complaints Authority (PPCA) and the Bureau of Special Investigations (BSI) and will investigate instances of abuse by agents of the state, including the security forces.

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