Gov’t moves to strengthen integrity of agencies

NATIONAL Security Minister Dr Horace Chang says that the Government is strengthening the “integrity assurance” of agencies that are crucial to the fight against crime and corruption.

He said the objective is to ensure that “we can deal with not just the violence producers but also the emerging network of criminal actors involved in a number of areas, including cybersecurity and money laundering”.

Dr Chang was addressing the launch of a polygraph examiners course on Monday at the National Police College in Twickenham Park, St Catherine.

The Major Organised Crime and Anti-Corruption Agency (MOCA) is undertaking a three-month course, which is the first of its kind in the region.

The course, which will certify eight new polygraph examiners from local and regional law-enforcement agencies, started October 10 and will end on December 16.

Lead instructors on the programme are from the Canadian Police College.

Dr Chang said the certification of polygraph examiners comes at a “very appropriate time”, as the Government puts additional legislation in place to stem crime and ensure integrity across the public service.

“It is part of a number of things to ensure that we get better governance and get better integrity across systems. If we don’t have that, it impedes development; it leads to lack of confidence by our citizens and reduces confidence by many who would like to invest and commit themselves to a country because of alleged corruption or breaches of security protocols,” he noted.

The minister said that more than 11,000 key personnel have been vetted using polygraph technology.

He noted that these include customs and border control personnel, who play a crucial role in intercepting illicit activities.

Canadian High Commissioner to Jamaica Emina Tudakovic said that the training course presents a “concrete opportunity” to build the country’s capacity to fight the criminal network.

She gave her Government’s commitment to continue to work with Jamaica in combatting domestic and transnational crimes.

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