Thursday, 11 July 2024 00:21

Justice Seymour Panton Challenges Calls for Integrity Commission Commentary

Retired Justice Seymour Panton Criticizes Calls for Integrity Commission to Comment on Investigations

Retired Justice Seymour Panton, the head of one of Jamaica’s principal anti-corruption bodies, has strongly criticized the public’s demands for the Integrity Commission to provide commentary on issues concerning statutory declarations or ongoing investigations. Panton argued that such requests are unjust and unreasonable, particularly in light of existing legal frameworks.

The Integrity Commission, tasked with overseeing Jamaica's anti-corruption efforts, has faced mounting pressure from various quarters to divulge details or opinions on matters within its purview. Panton emphasized that these pressures overlook the legal constraints under which the Commission operates, which prohibit it from publicly discussing ongoing investigations or divulging confidential information contained in statutory declarations.

In a recent statement, Panton underscored that these calls are not only unreasonable but also detrimental to the integrity of the investigative processes. He highlighted that the Commission adheres strictly to legal standards and principles designed to protect the privacy and rights of individuals involved in its inquiries.

Panton’s remarks come amidst heightened scrutiny of the Integrity Commission’s role in combating corruption within Jamaica. The Commission, mandated to uphold transparency and accountability in public office, operates under specific legal mandates that restrict its ability to disclose details of investigations until such matters are concluded or permissible under law.

Critics argue that transparency should not be sacrificed for legal caution, advocating instead for greater openness in governmental proceedings. However, Panton maintains that adherence to legal frameworks is crucial for preserving the integrity of investigations and safeguarding the rights of both the accused and those under scrutiny.

The Integrity Commission, established to consolidate several anti-corruption bodies under one unified entity, continues to navigate challenges associated with public expectations and legal constraints. Panton’s stance reflects a commitment to upholding due process and legal standards while addressing public demands for accountability in Jamaica’s governance.

For more details on Justice Seymour Panton’s comments and the Integrity Commission’s role, visit Jamaica Gleaner.

Original article:

The head of one of Jamaica’s chief anti-corruption bodies, Retired Justice Seymour Panton, has rebuked persons who call on the Integrity Commission to comment on matters relating to statutory declarations or investigations. Panton reasoned that given the state of the law, “it is irritatingly unfair and unreasonable for persons (some of whom know better) to be requesting that the Commission speak on these matters.

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