Giles’ comments on corruption ‘unfortunate’

GEORGETOWN – Presidential Adviser on Governance, Gail Teixeira, has described comments reportedly made by newly appointed Canadian High Commissioner, Nicole Giles, with regard to corruption in Guyana, as “unfortunate”.

According to the Kaieteur News, Giles conveyed that the Canadian Government wants a reduction in the level of corruption in Guyana and called for more public debate on the matter.

Speaking at a post-Cabinet media briefing at the Office of the President yesterday, Teixeira, who stood in for Dr. Roger Luncheon, stated that while the High Commissioner is free to express her opinion and that of her government, the way in which it was presented was unfortunate in terms of the Guyana-Canada relations.

Teixeira, who sits on the Mechanism for the Implementation of the Inter-American Convention against Corruption as a lead expert, said that she is “very au fait with the inadequacies of other countries, including Canada, in relation to the implementation and upholding of obligations under the Inter-American Convention against Corruption. It is an unfortunate comment to make for someone who has just arrived and has not completed the courtesy rounds.” Meanwhile, Guyana is preparing for a visit by officials from the Organisation of American States (OAS) and other experts from Haiti and Trinidad and Tobago.

Guyana has had it first review in 2006, second in 2008, and third in 2011.

Guyana is one of 31 countries that signed on to and ratified the Inter-American Convention against Corruption in 2001. Countries that have done so are provided with the opportunity to name a lead expert to sit on a high-level committee. Teixeira has been named the country’s lead expert since 2008. In September 2011, when the third round review of all the countries was completed, the committee decided that the fourth round will include visits to countries, as well as a follow-up on the implementation of the recommendations that were made during the first cycle review in 2006. These recommendations include conflict of interest, hiring practices, declaration of assets and incomes, rules of hiring, disciplining and promoting, and looking at the oversight bodies within each of the countries. The OAS team and the experts will begin arriving in Guyana from October 6 and the onsite visits and reviews will run from October 8-10. (Guyana Chronicle)

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