The New National Party (NNP) Government says it is committed to integrity in public life as well as maintaining a good relationship with the local media.
The six-week old administration of Prime Minister Dr. Keith Mitchell gave a commitment in the 2013 Throne Speech as delivered by Governor-General, Sir Carlyle Glean that “all members of my Government will declare their assets, liabilities and income”.
The previous Mitchell government was dogged with allegations of corruption and gross mismanagement during its earlier 13 year that ended with the July 2008 election victory of the National Democratic Congress (NDC) of Tillman Thomas.
During the campaign leading up to the February 19 General Election, Dr. Mitchell promised to right the wrongs made under his previous administration.
The previous NNP administration had enacted the Integrity in Public Life law in 2007 but despite several attempts and promises by the NNP and subsequently by the former Congress government to have the Commission begin operation, the process never materialised.
In delivering the Throne Speech on behalf of his Government, Sir Carlyle said the Mitchell regime will move swiftly to activate the Integrity Commission in a phased approach.
“To minimise further delays in the functioning of the Integrity Commission, my Government will invite the Commission to consider a phased approach to its operations such that having addressed members of Government and Parliament, it would move to address senior managers in the Public Service; revenue collection agencies and Chairmen and members of statutory bodies before addressing other covered persons in the legislation”, the Governor General said.
Former High Court Judge Lyle St Paul is the current Chairman of the Commission.
The campaign trail leading up to the February 19, General Election was paved with promises of a better relationship between an NNP-led Government and the local media.
One way the NNP intends to show its commitment to the media is ensuring that the media policy being developed is completed.
“My Government recognises the important role of the media to our democracy and national development. In this regard, my Government is committed to the completion of the media policy and providing support to assist the media in developing its capabilities to execute its important role,” was the commitment given in the Throne Speech.