St George’s, Grenada — Anti-corruption commissions from across the Caribbean are gathering in Grenada this week for a Commonwealth conference aimed at boosting regional cooperation and sharing innovations in the fight against graft.
The first Commonwealth regional conference for heads of integrity commissions and anti-corruption bodies in the Caribbean brings together the region’s most senior personnel tasked with addressing corruption and upholding standards of integrity.
The conference, taking place between 22 and 26 June 2015, is convened by the Commonwealth Secretariat and hosted by the Integrity Commission of Grenada in St George’s.
The meeting is intended to provide a platform for commissions to collaborate, exchange experiences and improve understanding about advanced techniques and procedures in forensics, financial accounting and asset tracking, as well as prosecutions, public education and prevention, among other areas.
In a statement, Commonwealth Deputy Secretary-General Deodat Maharaj said: “Corruption has been identified by our Commonwealth member countries as a major challenge which, left unaddressed, can sap national resources and hinder economic development. Our response is to bring nations together, recognising that we are at our strongest when we combine our efforts.”
“By providing a forum for national authorities in the Commonwealth Caribbean to learn from one another and develop regional initiatives, we are helping governments to tackle corruption and enforce principles of transparency and integrity,” the deputy secretary-general added.
Representatives from integrity commissions and similar bodies from Antigua and Barbuda, The Bahamas, Barbados, Belize, Dominica, Grenada, Guyana, Jamaica, Saint Lucia, St Kitts and Nevis, St Vincent and the Grenadines, and Trinidad and Tobago are represented at the meeting.
In addition, representatives of Caribbean institutions such as the Caribbean Community (CARICOM) and the Organization of American States are also in attendance.