Government Minister Urges Elected Representatives to Declare Wealth

Government Minister Urges Elected Representatives to Declare Wealth

Government Minister and former Chairman of the Public Accounts Committee, Julius Espat, is calling on all elected representatives to ensure that they submit their declarations of wealth to the Integrity Commission.  The recent commission was sworn in at the end of 2022, but has not been active nor has it been accountable or transparent in terms of their undertakings.  In this line, Minister Espat noted that the onus also falls on the elected representatives as well as the media to ensure accountability.

Julius Espat, Minister of Infrastructure Development and Housing: “Integrity Commission is in place but it’s not only the commission you know it is the elected representatives that have to be able to abide. There is a law that says if you don’t hand in your paperwork for the Integrity Commission , you assets then there is a time and then they charge you I think a $100 a day penalty. We have not enacted that yet but we have to send the message out. It is a responsibility of every elected official to be able to declare their assets there is nothing wrong with that. Why ? Because it gives you an idea of where you are and everybody can be able to work under this level of transparency, that hasn’t changed. But it is up to you guys. The media has to be able to follow it up. We have to be able to follow it up in government but the responsibility also lies on the elected representatives to follow the law. I have done it from the day I was elected every year you have to be able to file that report and I think it’s important and a very important report to follow. It’s in place. I think right now when I handed mine in this year the person told me that most people have been handing in. You have a couple people that haven’t and so I think we have to just be on top of it like everything else you have to supervise it, you have to have oversight for it to work.”

The current Integrity Commission comprises of its Chairman, Andrea McSweaney McKoy; George Swift, Zoe Roberson-Zetina, Ricardo Moguel, Katherine Meighan, Payal Ghanwani and Jaraad Ysaguirre.  They were sworn in on December 1, 2022 for a two year period.

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