2014 Do Right Champions Competition
In preparing for the 2014 Do Right Champions Competition the Integrity Commission of Trinidad and Tobago is collaborating with the Ministry of Education on an Integrated Arts Project for all students in Standard Three of the Primary School and Forms Two and Three of all Secondary Schools.
The Ministry of Education has proposed that the Integrity Commission “take full advantage of the new and embedded curriculum” for a widened student and teacher participation in the 2014 Do Right Champions competition. The Ministry of Education is convinced that this Integrated Arts Project will “achieve the desired impact of greater knowledge, understanding and application of Integrity in the everyday life of students and teachers.” The Integrated Arts which will include all disciplines of the Arts – Music, Visual Arts, Drama/Theatre Arts and Dance/Creative Movement. Details on the 2014 competition will be announced shortly.
The annual competition forms part of the Integrity Commission’s mandate “to carry out programmes of Public Education to foster an understanding of the standards of Integrity.” During the past three years the Commission invited students of all schools in Trinidad and Tobago to produce cartoons, poetry, essays, dramatic and musical extravaganzas and to utilise their talent, creativity and resources to focus attention on issues of Integrity.
WHERE ARE YOU IN RELATION TO THE LINE?
The Integrity Commission of Trinidad and Tobago has launched a series of Awareness Seminars – LEADtt – to help Persons in Public Life and those exercising public functions to better understand the impact that ethics, leading and living above the moral line can have on the individual and on the organizations.
The Integrity Commission is mandated in the Integrity in Public Life Act, to “preserve and promote the integrity of public officials and institutions” and believes that public officials must first act in a way that demonstrates honesty, trustworthiness and integrity in order to elicit the best in their subordinates.
LEADtt, the “Leading From Above The Line” philosophy, as presented by Dr. Theodore U. Ferguson, an educator and consultant, is a leadership development initiative to demonstrate how meaningful change and transformation within the person is necessary before transformation and change can occur in the home, organization and society.
LEADtt seminars have been held to date with the Boards and Management of the Trinidad and Tobago Electricity Commission, T&TEC, and the Petroleum Company of Trinidad and Tobago, PETROTRIN. Participants have expressed the view that the “Leading From Above The Line” Philosophy have had a positive impact.
Leaders from State Boards, Statutory Bodies, Members of the Government, Permanent Secretaries, Senior Public Administrators are invited to register to participate in the LEADtt seminar by calling the Commission’s Registrar at telephones: 623-8305 or 625-2392 Extension 226, E-Mail firstname.lastname@example.org; Website: www.integritycommission.org.tt
Often times we hear from Declarants – persons in public life who are required to complete and file declarations of income, assets and liabilities – that the declaration forms are challenging and as a result they are unable to meet the May 31 deadline each year. The Commission, in recognition of this, has initiated Open Week and a series of ‘Know Your Forms Seminars’ to alleviate any difficulties Declarants may encounter.
For the first time in May 2012, the Commission hosted an ‘Integrity Open Day’ at its office. Since then we have extended the outreach to five days- with one day dedicated to declarants in Tobago.
The “Open Day” now called “Open Week” is designed to reduce the high error rate of submissions and to ensure that Persons in Public Life complete and submit declarations by the annual May 31 deadline. ‘Declarants’ are given the opportunity to interface with our competent Compliance staff who assist attendees to complete and file their Declarations and Statements of Registrable Interests. During private and confidential sessions, declarants are guided through the related Form A and Form B and allowed to resolve outstanding matters.
The Integrity Commission facilitates workshops for Persons in Public Life who are required to file Declarations of Income, Assets, Liabilities and Statements of Registrable Interests. Senior members of the Integrity Commission’s Compliance meet with new board members to provide guidance and information with respect to the filing of mandatory declarations of income, assets and liabilities and statements of registrable interests under the Integrity in Public Life Act.
The seminars are interactive and presenters give an in-depth overview of the requirements of the Integrity In Public Life Act.
Persons in Public Life who fail to submit a completed declaration form and a Statement of Registrable Interest within the prescribed period will have his/her name published in the Gazette and in at least one daily newspaper. The Commission may make an ex-parte application to the High Court to secure compliance. Failure to comply with the directive of Court is an offence and a Person in Public Life is liable on conviction to a fine of $150,000.
Within the first three months of becoming a Person in Public Life one is required to file declarations for oneself, spouse and dependent children in respect of the previous year. Thereafter and in each succeeding year the Person in Public Life must file further declarations of Income, Assets and Liabilities by May 31.
One on One Meetings with Declarants
Any Person in Public Life is free to call the office of the Integrity Commission to schedule a meeting with any member of the Commission’s Compliance team. Persons can engage in discussions on any matter on which they require clarification. All meetings are confidential and are held in closed door rooms.
Public Education Visits
Regional and International Cooperation
The Integrity Commission of Trinidad and Tobago has had the distinguished opportunity to host representatives from the Turks and Caicos Integrity Commission and the Ethics Secretariat of Tanzania for the purpose of two study visits.
Both groups use the Trinidad and Tobago Integrity Commission for regional best practice and have agreed that the experience and exposure gained from the visits will assist them to build a solid foundation for their respective Commissions.
The groups have revealed that the attachment provided a solid capacity building opportunity that is crucial to the sustainable delivery of their mandates.
The Integrity Commission of Trinidad and Tobago is always delighted to share knowledge and believe these visits will provide important opportunities to transfer information and expertise on policy, programmes and ‘best practices’ while fostering and maintaining friendly relations with regional and international organizations.
Annual UWI Students Visit the Integrity Commission
Since 2012, students from the University of the West Indies (UWI) make an annual visit to the office of the Integrity Commission during the month of October. The students are enrolled in levels 2 and 3 undergraduate course called Anti-Corruption Strategies in Developing Countries. Anti-Corruption Strategies in Developing Countries examines corruption from a developing world perspective and is an essential module in the B.Sc. Public Sector Management (Special) Degree at the UWI.
The Registrar and Heads of Departments provide details on the activities of the Commission as they relate to Compliance, Investigations and Public Education.