THE Integrity Commission has applied to the Hight Court for an order directing 29 people who have failed to file their annual declarations to do so "under pain of criminal prosecution." Commission chairman, retired Justice Melville Baird made this disclosure in a newspaper advertisement today, to commemorate International Anti-Corruption Day.
Baird said the applications were made under Section 11(7) of the Integrity in Public Life Act. "The orders were all made. I took no pleasure in doing this but if legal action is the only way in which compliance with the Integrity in Public Life Act could be assured, then I will take legal action," he said.
Baird said corruption has insinuated itself with such trenchancy in our society. He also said the process of eradicating this corruption is so glacial that "society stands in great peril of consigning it to the quiet backwaters of life, becoming calloused to it and accepting it with unresisting acquiescence, as an inevitable incident of our nation's evolution.
Describing corruption similar to the mythological hydra and being ecumenical in its devastation of countries, Baird said, "This cannot be our legacy to posterity." He appealed to all citizens to cultivate a deeper sense of civic consciousness and avoid committing petty infractions of the law. He warned this practice could set the stage for the commission of more serious infractions and "engender in the process, a disposition to rebellion and laissez faire- fertile grounds for corruption." Baird urged adults to set the right example for young people and avoid corruption.