Saturday, October 4th 2008
DEBATES in Parliament are supposed to be about the interests of those who put Members of Parliament there, not to hurl scandalous allegations at individuals in and out of Parliament. In this regard, there is another aspect of Prime Minister Manning’s parliamentary behaviour that needs noting.
We refer to his allegation that somehow the MP for Siparia, Kamla Persad-Bissessar, had been given access by an employee of the Integrity Commission to confidential information on persons unnamed, the allegation tied to the “problem” of unwillingness of persons to sit on boards. Mr Manning further observed that he had heard these reports from time to time and caused the matter to be investigated.
Surely, the Prime Minister must know that under Section 20 (1) of the Integrity in Public Life Act 2000 all members of the Integrity Commission and its employees are bound by oath to secrecy regarding records and that under Section 20 (5) if any of the Commission or its employees communicates or even attempts to communicate confidential information to any unauthorised person he/she shall be guilty of an offence and on conviction is liable to a fine of $250,000 and ten years imprisonment.
Full Article : trinidadexpress.com
Seetahal slams Manning
Prime Minister Patrick Manning has no business to be investigating any Parliament member, Independent Senator Dana Seetahal said yesterday.
Daly expresses grave concern
President of the Law Association Martin Daly yesterday expressed concern about “someone in authority” using the Parliament as a safe haven from which to launch unsubstantiated attacks, based more on “inner feelings” and without producing the information to justify the allegations made.
Deane remains mum on PM’s disclosure
Former chairman of the Integrity Commission, Gordon Deane, has chosen to remain mum on the disclosure made by Prime Minister Patrick Manning that confidential information from the Commission was leaked under his purview.
Authorised access only to Integrity files
Integrity Commission chairman John Martin yesterday assured there has been no leak of the commission’s files and maintained the commission operates with the strictest confidentiality.
Rowley, Valley under scrutiny
The Special Anti Crime Unit of Trinidad and Tobago (SAUTT) has carried out surveillance on former government ministers and members of Parliament, among them Diego Martin West MP Dr Keith Rowley, Ken Valley and Fitzgerald Hinds, sources disclosed yesterday.