Govt hosts 2nd workshop on strengthening anti-corruption framework

The content originally appeared on: INews Guyana
Minister of Parliamentary Affairs Gail Teixeira

As the government forges ahead to eradicate fraudulent conduct in all sectors across Guyana, its second anti-corruption framework workshop was opened on Tuesday, at the Arthur Chung Conference Centre (ACCC).

Organised by the Parliamentary Affairs and Governance Ministry, the two-day seminar will see intense dialogue between representatives of the government, the private sector, and civil society on transparency and accountability n each of these sectors.

Following the hosting of the first anti-corruption workshop, a framework was established, focusing mainly on the government and the agencies that deal with accountability and transparency in the government sector.

Parliamentary Affairs and Governance Minister, Gail Teixeira said the government’s ultimate aim is to strengthen its robust anti-corruption framework and build effective collaboration between the various regulatory and oversight agencies and the public.

“The importance of what we are doing here today is taking us to another step… when we finish this workshop depending on what comes out of it and the experiences, we may produce fact sheet number two … and to create constantly until we are able to build a total framework,” Minister Teixeira stated.

Guyana ratified the Inter-American Convention against Corruption and the Un Convention against corruption and reports on progress made.

The new Ministry established a National Coordinating Committee on these Conventions in June 2021 months. It published “ Guyana’s anti-corruption framework which is being circulated widely and held its first workshop in June 2022

Minister Teixeira noted that it is essential for people to be aware of the decision-making processes of government and non-governmental organisations.

This, she added, is one of the significant elements of good governance at all levels of society.

Importantly, the Minister underscored that transparency is especially significant in the process of sustainable development, which impacts on all players.

“When there is corruption, the poor and vulnerable suffer the most, women, children, elderly, and youth suffer the most. All sectors must have transparency in their decision-making and its implementation of laws, policies and projects, which ultimately should be aligned with the principle of democracy,” she contended.

Accordingly, she believes that transparency has the potential to narrow the gap between what an organisation or group seem to be doing versus what they are actually doing.

A growing number of researchers have discussed the multiple dimensions of transparency, including facilitating maximum public participation, improving social morality, determining corruption, building political trust and the realisation of human rights.

Minister Teixeira underscored that government has a framework which provides for the public and media to access annual public reports of constitutional bodies and state boards which are tabled in the National Assembly and posted on websites.

Another, she disclosed, is the Auditor General’s Annual Report is publicly available and the entire budgetary process in the National Assembly is livestreamed.

There is also the mid-year review which the Finance Minister takes to the National Assembly after recess, that reports on government performance in the first six months of the year.

Moreover, the Public Accounts Committee (PAC’s) hearings are now also live-streamed for the general public.

“Through improvement in connectivity and against to the internet, people receive information is power, people make decisions based on information, and if they are given accurate information or evidence-based information, they are more able to make decisions with regards to their lives,” Minister Teixeira added.

Panel discussions will continue on Wednesday and will see the participation of key stakeholders.