Paul Lismore

[Paul Lismore] How can Icac fight corruption when it is itself corrupt to the core ?

Rédigé par Paul Lismore le Lundi 30 Novembre 2020

On 6th October, some members of staff of ICAC wrote a letter to the Parliamentary Committee of ICAC, otherwise known as yet another group of layabouts doing next to nothing but who like to call each other "Honourable". As expected, the layabouts did nothing about that letter of complaint which, lest we forget, came directly from the heart of ICAC itself.

Let me give you some of the salient points of that letter, and hopefully, even the trolls who pollute Facebook, will come to accept that ICAC is now so corrupt that it could not fight its way out of a wet paper bag, never mind fight corruption.

1/ " We firmly feel that Navin Beekarry has been bringing the institution into disrepute since his appointment and continues to fail as Head of an institution requiring the highest of moral values, the strongest sense of ethics and the best conduct and attitude in the workplace. These qualities are blatantly lacking in NB as we are about to illustrate."

That is how the writers start their letter to the Parliamentary Committee on ICAC. It then follows on with:

2/  Allegations that ICAC is making an abuse of Section 26 of POCA which allows it to resort to the use of independent professionals "where it considers it expedient to do so". It alleges that Navin Beekarry has been exploiting this loophole to appoint cronies in key administrative roles, completely bypassing a fair process of recruitment where the vacancy would have been advertised and open to a wider pool of candidates."

The letter names Shirley Ann Bennyet, long standing friend and colleague of Navin Beekarry, whose contract as "independent professional" should have been terminated in 20118 following the implementation of a performancement management system for ICAC. Navin Beekarry has been instead renewing the contract of her friend annually, accompanied with substantial salary increases.

3/ This section is called " Abuse of funds of ICAC".

It lambasts the quite useless Parliamentary Committee on ICAC for treating with criminal leniency the outrageous waste of public money when Navin Beekarry's office was 'renovated' in order to keep pace with his gargantuan ego. As the writers say, the Parliamentary Committee " failed to mention that the preferred bidder had already won a first contract in a previous bidding exercise and that Navin Beekarry had taken the liberty of pre-selecting furniture for his office. The apparent lavishness with which this office was done is in serious contradiction with the standards expected to be followed by a public official in such a position."

4/ Did the Parliamentary Committee even bother to find out if " Navin Beekarry had purchased Rs 7000 worth of N95 masks and costly lunchboxes of the Tupperware brand, all for his sole personal use and whether he had also racked up a five-digit dry cleaning bill for the monthly service of his office towels? Did the Committee know that whilst Patriote Beekarry was busy feeding his grotesque sense of entitlement, he was at the same time asking staff to make sacrifices to cut overheads?

5/ The writers go on to assert that the toxic work environment described by the Supreme Court in Bhadain v ICAC gives a telling account of Navin Beekarry’s management style, one fuelled by gossip mongering and ‘divide and conquer’ credo:

" "The picture of ICAC left with us is one of a couple of head-hunters, playing employees against employees, using stratagems for developing personal registers, brandishing high-sounding rhetorics to justify actions based on mere suspicions and seeking to justify questionable goals by culpable harassment, sequestration, confessions coupled with indignities."

According to them, history is repeating itself. Bullying in the form of blame-shifting, name-calling and intimidation tactics are commonplace at ICAC today, with officers forced to take the knee because there is no trade union or supervisory instance above Navin Beekarry. " It is no surprise that the acting directors act according to NB's whims, processing and approving questionable projects, just to maintain their current privileges .On the other hand, those who do not partake in his management-by-gossip policy see their contracts terminated or are simply victimised, for petty reasons." 

6/ There is a whole section on hundreds of millions of rupees of taxpayers' money squandered on an IT system contracted out to Rogers Capital, which " does not make sense because all files sent for prosecution at court level need to be transformed into hardcopies at the end of the day.... By the time savings the computerisation project will incur in the balance of books are seen, the system will be outdated and will require a complete overhaul."

The writers draw the Parliamentary Committee's attention to Section 61 of POCA, which states that it " may examine a member of the Board or an officer; summon a public official to answer questions and produce documents; and require the Director-General or any officer to furnish any accounting or other records relating directly or indirectly to all financial transactions of the Commission and to answer any question in relation to such financial transactions."

The writers of the letter urge the Parliamentary Committee to a/ Summon officers under immunity of management reprisal as this will allow the Parliamentary Committee to uncover other aspects currently plaguing the ICAC.b/ to issue guidelines for the constitution of the much needed ICAC Staff Trade Union to guard us against the dictatorial management currently poisoning the working environment within the institution. 

They appeal to the Parliamentary Committee to take their letter seriously because ICAC " is currently under the complete control of an an incompetent maniac who relies on passive followers, but also the national fight against corruption and money laundering, with direct ramifications on the rating of the country in foreign governance indicators."

The end result? The Parliamentary committee has done nothing! But then what can you expect when it is made up of boboks and is chaired by a useless transfuge who is so deluded that she really believes she has it in her to be a minister?

So, if you are looking at ICAC to fight corruption, look elsewhere. Because ICAC is more corrupt than many of the organisations it pretends to investigate.

Lundi 30 Novembre 2020

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