Jamaica’s Prime Minister Andrew Holness won’t face charges over possible conflict of interest in contracts awarded to a construction company in 2007-2009 while he was education minister.
The decision was handed down on Thursday after reviewing a report on the case by the country’s Integrity Commission.
The case was investigated after a news report in 2016 questioned the close ties between Holness and principals of a company hired for several roof repairs at schools and other projects, however, reports indicated that Holness “knew two directors and shareholders of the company for more than 20 years.
“The company had received 10 contracts totaling nearly $142,000, but only five of them were reported to the Office of the Contractor General as required, the report said. Holness, education minister from 2007 to 2012, said he never exercised influence on any process for the awarding of the contracts. Holness became prime minister following 2016 elections,” according to reports from Newstimes
The report was sent to Parliament and was tabled on 14 February 2023.
Confirmation of the tabling was communicated to the Commission on 15 February 2023.
The Commission’s review of the Ruling, having been finalised, instruction was given on the said 15 February 2023 for it to be published, and the publication was done on 16 February 2023.
It is worth repeating and stressing that publication of the Ruling could not be done before or simultaneously with the report.
It had to await the tabling of the report. That is the law as crafted by Parliament and referred to earlier.