By Amin Kef (Ranger)
The Anti-Corruption Commission (ACC), in a public notice dated 17th July, 2023, has called on all newly appointed/elected and former Public Officers to comply with the requirement of declaring their income, assets, and liabilities.
The directive, according to the public notice, is in accordance with Section 119 (1) of the Anti-Corruption Act 2008, as amended by Section 9 (a) of the Anti-Corruption (Amendment) Act, 2019.
Under that provision, the ACC said individuals assuming public office are mandated to submit a declaration of their income, assets, and liabilities to the Commission within three months of their appointment.
Additionally, they are required to file further declarations every two years during their tenure, with the deadline set for the 31st of March of the second year. Former public officers are also obliged to submit a declaration upon leaving office, within three months from the cessation of their duties, unless an extension is granted by the Commissioner in writing.
The ACC maintained that Non-compliance with those regulations constitutes an offense under Section 122 (a) of the Anti-Corruption Act 2008, as amended by the Anti-Corruption (Amendment) Act, 2019 stressing how any public officer who fails to declare his or her assets may face a minimum fine of Twenty Million (Old) Leones (Le20, 000,000) or imprisonment for a minimum of one year, or both.
Based on the public notice, the ACC is strongly urging all current and former public officers who have not yet submitted their Assets Declaration Forms to the Commission to do so immediately adding that failure to comply within the specified deadlines will result in the invocation of penal provisions outlined in the Act or other measures to ensure full compliance and these measures may include the withholding of salaries, benefits, and/or criminal prosecution.