CAC Attends Discussions with PN’s Commission A on Amendents to Article 12

Dili — Deputy Commissioner Jose “Samala-Rua” Neves today led a team in discussions with the Commission A of the National Parliament, regarding the amendment proposal originating from the government benches.

Deputy Commissioner Neves was accompanied by Deputy Commissioner Manuel Bucar Corte Real, senior advisers Leonor Furtado and Rui Manuel Oliva and othter staff.

The President of Commission A Carmelita Moniz, who presided over the discussion said it was part of a consultation process between the CAC, Prosecutor-General and the Ministry of Justice regarding a proposal to amend Article 12 of the CAC’s organic law, to harmonize responsibilities between CAC and the Prosecutor-General’s Office.

Deputy Commissioner José Neves explained that under the current law, Article 12 gives power to the Anti-Corruption Commissioner to appoint up to three deputy commissioners. Under the proposal from the government benches, the CAC Commissioner would have the power to nominate two deputy commissioners, however the third deputy commissioner would have to be indicated by the Prosecutor-General’s Office.

“Under this proposal, it would be mandatory for a CAC deputy commissioner to be indicated by the Prosecutor-General, meaning that the independent nature of CAC and competency of its Commissioner would be undermined given their power to make appointments has been weakened,” Deputy Commissioner Neves said.

Raising constructive criticism of CAC’s investigations functions, members of the National Parliament encouraged CAC to consider these as challenges and continue the work and dedication it has shown to date to prevent and fight corruption for the people of Timor-Leste.

“CAC holds an important role in this country and, with the responsibility that Parliament has placed on your shoulders, can really make a difference to this country and its people,” said Natalino dos Santos.

Commission A of the National Parliament will continue to consult about amendements to Article 12 with other relevant state institutions like Ministry of Public, Ministry of Justice and other entities before bring it to the plenary for a vote. (*)

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