(Press Unit in the Office of the Prime Minister)
BASSETERRE, St. Kitts — Newly appointed Chairman of the Integrity Commission, Damian Kelsick, is of the firm view that the three-person Commission, established under the Integrity in Public Life Act, No. 18 of 2013, is well balanced and highly capable of conducting its affairs in an impartial and responsible manner.
“I think the commission is set up as well as it can be set up to ensure as much impartiality as possible. With that in mind, it is my task and it will be my unending endeavour to ensure that the Commission operates at the highest levels of integrity,” elsick stated, while noting that “a Commission of this nature is critical in any good governance agenda or programme of any country.”
Kelsick, Franklin Maitland and Mrs. Carol Boddie were presented with their Instruments of Appointment from His Excellency the Governor General, Sir S.W. Tapley Seaton on Aug. 27, during a ceremony at Government House to serve as members of the Integrity Commission.
“We are all in this country interested very much so in the integrity of our leaders, both in public and private sectors, and these institutions can only work if all people who are called upon to serve accept service, so it is in that light that I willingly accepted service knowing full well the challenges that I would be facing,” Kelsick said.
The Commission chair acknowledged that he expects members of the public to question the impartiality of the three-member Commission but insisted that “the good thing about this commission frankly is that unlike other bodies in the country the chairmanship [of the Integrity Commission] is appointed by the Governor General in his own deliberate judgement, so we have, I think, as balanced a body as we can get. We have a member appointed by the Prime Minister, we have a member appointed by the Leader of the Opposition and we have a member appointed through no political affiliation, and that member who has no political affiliation as a basis of his appointment is the chairman of the Commission.”
Kelsick, an Attorney-at-Law for close to 30 years, will serve as Chairman of the Integrity Commission for a five-year period.
He noted that, “I hope to leave behind a fully functional and capable institution that has the necessary tools to carry out its functions but more importantly, I hope to leave behind a culture of impartiality, fairness and behaviour that the country would be proud of.”
The two other members, Franklin Maitland and Mrs. Carol Boddie, will serve on the Integrity Commission for a three-year term.