Contractor General: Political Greed is Affecting Jamaica’s Growth

Kingston, Jamaica (McN) – Jamaica’s Contractor General Dirk Harrison says the main factor affecting Jamaica’s growth is greed from both the PNP and JLP.

Contractor General Dirk Harrison peaking at the Private Sector Organisation of Jamaica President’s Forum at Jamaica Pegasus on the issue of corruption in Jamaica. 

“As a country, greed is affecting our growth on both sides of the political divide. We need to ensure we promote growth, facilitate competition in the marketplace, reject, restrain and repel favoritism and nepotism.” Harrison charged.

“The list continues. The point I make is simple: if any administration — and I say both sides of the political divide because the OCG report spans both sides — do the homework, sit down and diligence…But what happens in this country is that when an officer of the OCG submits a report, the office is chastised, but yet still, once again, we have a light at the end of the tunnel,” he lead on.

Harrison pointed out that in the midst of the Jamaica’s growth issues, anti corruption measures have been improving since the 2014 merger of the Anti-Corruption Branch (ACB) with the Major Organised and Anti-Corruption Agency.

“Since ACB’s re-organisation with international support in 2008, 538 Police have resigned [or] have been dismissed for corruption or ethical violations; another 26 officers face criminal corruption charges since 2015,” remarked Harrison.

“The list continues. The point I make is simple: if any administration — and I say both sides of the political divide because the OCG report spans both sides — do the homework, sit down and diligence…But what happens in this country is that when an officer of the OCG submits a report, the office is chastised, but yet still, once again, we have a light at the end of the tunnel,” he continued.

Harrison highlighted that a recent Bill Johnson poll about corruption in Jamaica showed that 70% of Jamaicans surveyed believed that elected officials were corrupt, while 80% believed that members of the Police force were corrupt, and 50% of government employees were though of as corrupt.

Harrison went on to state:

“Ladies and gentlemen, we are in 2017; there is no need for us to stimulate a debate as to whether or not the perception of corruption is a real problem in Jamaica, or whether it is a threat to the nation’s overall well-being,” he said.

“Nor do we need to debate the accuracy of Bill Johnson’s poll. But importantly, the point needs to be made that the pervasiveness of corruption is in fact a very adverse governance phenomenon in Jamaica, and urgent and comprehensive measures need to be aggressively pursued to arrest this governance deficit in all quarters of the society.”


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