Jamaica private sector groups call for forensic audit of Petrojam

(Jamaica Gleaner) Three of the island’s leading private sector groups have called for a forensic audit of the affairs of oil refinery Petrojam and the Universal Access Fund, both agencies of the Technology and Energy Ministry.

In a statement yesterday afternoon, the Jamaica Chamber of Commerce, the Jamaica Manufacturers and Exporters Association and the Private Sector Organisation of Jamaica also called for Cabinet to take immediate steps to ensure the effective monitoring and supervision of all public boards and to report to Parliament and the public their activities.

“These actions and their successful implementation are essential to preserving and advancing recent gains by Jamaica on the global competitive and corruption perception indices and hesitant or indecisive responses will risk serious slippage,” the groups argued.

They contend that the proposed remedial action should not be limited to repairing the deficiencies at Petrojam as a cleaning up exercise.

“The truth, which should now be evident to all but the willfully blind, is that Petrojam is but a particularly bad example of the chronic malfunctioning of our Statutory Boards and a case study in how the piecemeal and dysfunctional administration of governance processes allows for the plundering of state resources, panders to cronyism and provides fertile soil for corruption,” the private organisations said.

They charged that the time is right for strong, decisive and comprehensive action.

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