New code of ethics for public servants

An Integrity in Public Life Bill to govern the Public Service, including Members of Parliament is up for debate in the next working session of the newly-elected House of Assembly.

The measure was tabled in Parliament by Prime Minister Perry Christie, after it was foreshadowed by Governor-General Dame Ivy Dumont in the Speech from the Throne during the official opening of Parliament.

"My Government is committed to integrity in public life," Dame Ivy said.

In this vein, she stated that the Progressive Liberal Party Government has adopted the "strictest" Code of Ethics for Ministers and Parliamentary Secretaries.

This new thrust, she said, would be enshrined in a formal communication to Parliament at the first working session of the House of Assembly and will be shared with the general public.

In addition to the new Code of Ethics, she said, "My Government will introduce a Bill for an Integrity in Public Life Act, to govern all Parliamentarians, heads of Government Boards and senior civil servants.

"This legislation will be designed to induce higher levels of accountability and transparency so as to discourage corruption and ethical impropriety in public life," Dame Ivy said.

Other new measures to be introduced in the House of Assembly, is a Time-sharing Encouragement Act to stimulate the expansion of this segment of the tourism market by providing tax relief and other concessions similar to those that are available to hotels under the Hotels Encouragement Act.

"My Government also proposes to create tourism development zones to revive dying urban neighbourhoods and family island settlements by granting loan assistance and tax relief for the renovation of homes and other buildings intended for use as guest-cottages; and by providing start-up loans for new business ventures of touristic appeal in these zones," Dame Ivy said.

Another major tourism-related initiative of the Government, under the aegis of the Ministry of Trade & Industry, will be the creation and expansion of local handicraft enterprises with the aim of increasing tourism expenditure on local handicrafts.

Also to be introduced in this legislative session are a new Pensions Act, to repeal the Insurance Act 1969 and replace it with an Act to facilitate the growth and development of a well-regulated, vibrant domestic insurance sector.

"Legislation will be placed before you for a new Act to meet this need," Dame Ivy said.

Created: 22 August 2017
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