CIAA refining draft bill to amend anti-graft Act

- Post Report, Kathmandu
Officials say that they are trying to make the law as possibly compatible with the UN Convention against Corruption

Nov 29, 2016-The Commission for Investigation of Abuse of Authority (CIAA) has taken a fresh initiative to amend the Prevention of Corruption Act 2002 in line with the provision of the new constitution and the United Nations Convention against Corruption.

To that end, the CIAA has recalled the draft of the amendment bill that was forwarded to the Prime Minister’s Office for deliberation last year, after the new constitution was promulgated. The draft was recalled two weeks ago because it needed some revisions, according to the officials at the PMO and the CIAA. 

A CIAA commissioner said that they sought to revise the previous draft based on the suggestions taken during the secretary-level meetings of different ministries. 

“We will resend the draft to the PMO after refining the draft,” the commissioner said.

The CIAA has withheld the specifics of the revisions made in the draft, which is being prepared by a committee led by Commissioner Nabin Ghimire.

 The exercise of amending the Act is taking place in the context that the new constitution has removed the anti-graft body from its jurisdiction of investigating improper conduct and Nepal endorsing the United Nations Convention against Corruption in December 2011.

According to a CIAA official, they will try to make the law as possibly compatible with the UN convention. The UN calls for preventive measures and criminalisation of the most prevalent forms of corruption at both public and private sectors. The convention also requires the member countries to return assets obtained through corruption to the nation from which they were stolen.

The convention stats: “Each State Party shall take measures, in accordance with the fundamental principles of its domestic law, to prevent corruption involving the private sector, enhance accounting and auditing standards in the private sector and, where appropriate, provide effective, proportionate and dissuasive civil, administrative or criminal penalties for failure to comply with such measures.” 

An official at the PMO said that they agreed more or less on the idea of expanding CIAA’s jurisdiction to oversee at least the public limited companies such as banks, financial institutions and insurance companies where public deposit their money in the form of deposit or premium.

How much CIAA’s jurisdiction would be expanded by amending the Act remains to be seen, given its Chief Commissioner Lokman Singh Karki facing an impeachment motion while suspended from  his office after he was charged with abusing his power.   

Published: 29-11-2016 08:21

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