St. Maarten Governor submits Government’s interim integrity progress report

POSTED: 05/28/14 11:04 PM

St. Maarten –Governor Eugène Holiday submitted the interim progress report of the integrity inquiry to the Kingdom Council of Ministers in keeping with the provisions of the Kingdom Decree of September 30, 2013, his cabinet said yesterday in a press release. A copy of the report has also been submitted to the Council of Ministers of Sint Maarten. The report provides an outline of the progress of the work conducted by the New York based accounting firm Pricewaterhouse Coopers (PWC) through the first three months of the integrity inquiry that began on February 26.

The purpose of the inquiry is threefold: to collect data and information for assessment based on integrity requirements in accordance with the rule of law in a democratic society, to report the findings from the assessment and finally to make recommendations that add value to the functioning of the public administration of Sint Maarten.

The scope of the inquiry covers the government and includes ministers, the civil servants in the ministries, and state owned companies. It focuses on vulnerable sectors such as prostitution, gambling, and immigration as well as vulnerable activities such as permits for and the execution of infrastructural works and other large tenders. For clarity’s sake, the cabinet said, it should be noted that the inquiry is an integrity investigation and not a penal investigation. The inquiry is as such separate from any penal investigation being carried out by the Office of the Public Prosecutor.

At this half way point of the inquiry PWC has substantially completed the desk research and analysis of relevant documents. It led interviews with over 80 Government officials, interested parties and key stakeholders. Furthermore PWC conducted transactional analysis and has begun to identify and frame the core issues and recommendations.

Future steps will include completion of the desk and field research to include identification and clarification of integrity issues so that PWC can complete its assessment against leading practices and standards and ultimately provide recommendations aimed at enhancing the integrity architecture for consideration by the government of Sint Maarten.

This week the steering group integrity inquiry, which was installed by the Governor in December 2013, meets with the project management of PWC on Sint Maarten to speak about the next steps to be taken in support of the completion of the Integrity inquiry with presentation of the final report according to plan by the end of August this year.

Further information and developments regarding the inquiry will be made public by the Governor through the Cabinet of the Governor.

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