—says provisions in Bill constitute a threat to democracy and good governance
The State Assets Recovery Agency (SARA) Bill came up for a second reading on Thursday in the National Assembly and the Private Sector Commission (PSC) maintains its concerns about the “draconian nature” of the Bill and the potential negative impact on investor confidence.
The Commission has since written to House Speaker, Dr Barton Scotland, and noted that it was informed that the Bill was “essentially the same Bill” that was sent to stakeholders for consultations and no “meaningful changes” were made to its provisions – despite the concerns of civil society.
As such, the PSC made clear that he Bill is in conflict with the rights enshrined in the Constitution of Guyana and constitute a threat to democracy and good governance.
The Commission called for the Bill to be sent to a Parliamentary Special Select Committee so that its provisions, and the implications of those provisions, can be thoroughly examined at a level where civil society may be invited to speak.
The SARA Bill was tabled last week in the House. The bill addresses the establishment a State Assets Recovery Agency to be headed by a Director who shall be a corporation sole to recover through civil proceedings State property unlawfully acquired by a public official or any other person, to provide for investigations leading to the granting by the High Court of Restraint and Civil Recovery Orders in respect of unlawfully acquired property, to engage in international cooperation in the recovery of stolen assets of States within the contemplation of the Act, and for related matters.