Ugandan Judge to Head Seychelles Anti-Corruption Commission

Duncan Gaswaga, a Ugandan judge has been appointed chairman of the Anti-Corruption Commission of Seychelles.

Justice Gaswaga was appointed on Friday by Seychelles President James Michel to head the five-member first Anti-Corruption Commission in the island nation.

He has served the in the judiciary of Seychelles, initially as a magistrate and later as a Supreme court judge, between 2002 and 2013. He is currently a High court judge in Uganda.

A statement issued by Seychelles State House says that the appointment was based on recommendations from the Constitutional Appointments Authority in fulfilment of a presidential commitment to set up a body to address corruption in Seychelles.

The decision to create an Anti-Corruption Commission was announced by President Michel in his state of the nation address in February 2016 and endorsed by the National Assembly in April.

Seychelles is ranked 40th in the 'Corruption Perceptions Index' (CPI) compiled on an annual basis by Transparency International. This position means that Seychelles is one of the least corrupt countries in Africa, in third place after Botswana and Cape Verde. During the presidential campaigns last December, the opposition pointed out corruption as one of the ills of the current government.

Machel who has been president since 2004 says that his government would never tolerate corruption, and that it had already taken harsh measures where corruption had existed. President Machel said that the new commission would spearhead this drive relentlessly.

The commission will have the powers to investigate, detect and prevent practices linked to corruption. It will also receive complaints against corruption and conduct investigations in government departments and institutions which receive funding and donations from government.

The statement added that one of the first tasks of the Anti-Corruption Commission will be to recommend to the president, the appointment of a chief executive officer who will be responsible for implementing the decisions of the commission, and for the effective management of the affairs of the commission.

Justice Gaswaga will be deputized by Daniel Jacques Belle, a former member of the National Assembly.

Source: The Observer.

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