Thu | Oct 18, 2018

Revenue Protection Department to expose students to ethics

Published:Wednesday | June 20, 2018 | 9:51 AM

The Revenue Protection Department (RPD) is to pursue introducing ethics in schools as part of its wider strategy of fighting corruption.

Speaking at the RPD’s 10th anniversary church service at Saint Peter’s Anglican Church in Port Royal on Sunday, June 17, Commissioner/Principal Director (Acting), Cranston G. Morgan, said the Department will step up enforcement activities as well as engage more civil society groups.

Additionally, he said the RPD will continue the fight by assisting more government entities to put systems in place to deter corrupt activities.

Morgan highlighted that according to the 2017 Corruption Perception Index, Jamaica has improved 15 places to be ranked 68 of 180 countries, and encouraged Jamaicans to strive to reduce corruption even further.

“Improvements must come from all sectors. Government must continue to set the tone by being open and transparent, and public servants must continue to understand what acceptable ethical behaviour is, and to live it,” the Acting Commissioner said.

He said that in addition to this, the public must take responsibility as well, “as it takes two to tango, and if they are not willing to participate in bribery or other forms of corruption, then public servants won’t have corrupt opportunities,”.

The Acting Commissioner urged the media to continue to shine the light on corrupt practices while calling for the church to “continue to preach the truth and to be our collective conscience”.

He called for civil society; non-governmental organisations and other special-interest groups “to continue to agitate for better and to expose those among them that are corrupt or seek to corrupt public officials”.

Morgan said that the RPD, within the last 10 years, “has stopped the Treasury from being fleeced of millions of dollars, has successfully brought perpetrators of fraud to justice, has stemmed the leakages of tax dollars already collected, and has dealt with persons and agencies attempting to breach the laws of Customs”.

The RPD engages primarily with the Jamaica Customs Agency and Tax Administration Jamaica in helping to make their systems and processes more robust by investigating cases involving tax fraud; enforcing tax laws and screening potential employees.

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