Office of the Integrity Commission, St George’s, Grenada, 12 December 2018: A Commission of inquiry is scheduled to begin in the first quarter of the new year, in the Office of the Integrity Commission led probe into the affairs of the Marketing and National Importing Board (MNIB).
This was revealed by Chairman of the Commission, Anande Trotman-Joseph (Lady Joseph), in her message to mark International Anti-Corruption Day on 09 December 2018.
Lady Joseph said in her message that interviews with individuals who have knowledge of the operations of the MNIB were scheduled to begin on Friday 14 December 2018, and the Commission of Inquiry into the matter would begin in the first quarter of 2019.
International Anti-Corruption Day is observed annually on 09 December, and Chairman of the Commonwealth Caribbean Association of Integrity Commissions and Anti-Corruption Bodies (CCAICACB) Dirk Harrison, was in Grenada to celebrate the day with Grenada’s Office of the Integrity Commission.
He addressed a function at the Kirani James Athletic Stadium on Friday, and brought a message from Secretary-General of the United Nations António Guterres, which highlighted the cost of corruption.
Mr Harrison quoted from the Secretary General’s address:
“Corruption is present in all countries, rich and poor, North and South. It is an assault on the values of the United Nations. It robs societies of schools, hospitals and other vital services, drives away foreign investment and strips nations of their natural resources. It undermines the rule of law and abets crimes such as the illicit trafficking of people, drugs and arms”.
“The World Economic Forum estimates that the cost of corruption is at least $2.6 trillion – or 5 per cent of global gross domestic product. And according to the World Bank, businesses and individuals pay more than $1 trillion in bribes each year”.
“The United Nations Convention against Corruption (UNCAC) is among our primary tools for advancing the fight. Sustainable Development Goal 16 and its targets also offer a template for action”.
“Millions of people around the world have gone to the ballots this year with corruption as one of their top priorities. On International Anti-Corruption Day, let us take a stand for integrity”.
The Integrity Commission also officially unveiled its Logo and Mascot, which were selected from a national competition. The Logo Competition was won by Alyssa Prince of St Andrew’s Anglican Secondary School with a second-place award to Lyandra Narayan of McDonald College, whose entries were merged for the final product. The Mascot Competition was won by Celine Dickson of Anglican High School.
Lady Joseph, who did the unveiling, praised the students for their creations, and highlighted the Commission’s efforts to include young people in their activities. This, she said, will help to ensure that the message of integrity is carried through the next generation.
His Lordship Bishop Clyde Martin Harvey and Reverend Sylbert Prescod delivered prayers and blessings during the celebration. There was also a poem written and delivered by staff members of the Commission and the Presentation Brothers College Choir delivered a cultural performance which emphasised the anti-corruption cultural shift that is needed at this time.