The Director General
Independent Commission Against Corruption
I write on behalf of l’express to seek, pursuant to Section 81(4) of the Prevention of Corruption Act, disclosure of information in the public interest, for purposes of publication in the press.
We wish to publish, for the benefit of our readers, information clarifying matters of great public interest, which have been debated in the media and in parliament over the last few weeks.
Given the confusion in the minds of the public at large over several aspects of the investigation/s being carried out (or having been carried) by the ICAC in connection with the purchase of an immoveable property at Angus Road, Vacoas, we wish to seek the following clarifications from the ICAC:
1. It has been reported that two investigations regarding cash payments were started and then closed/suspended/put in abeyance. Were these investigations terminated by the ICAC and were the conclusions submitted to the director of public prosecutions (DPP)?
2. It has also been reported that following the above two investigations, a third investigation was started in 2013 over a separate matter but still related to the acquisition of the above property. Indeed, the prime minister mentioned in the National Assembly that there is an ongoing ICAC investigation. Will you confirm that this is so and that this investigation has not yet been concluded after seven years?
3. It has also been reported that the attorney general cancelled in early 2015 the request for mutual legal assistance made to the United Kingdom authorities. Since this request had been made at the instance of the ICAC conducting an investigation over a matter with cross-border implications, did the ICAC ask the attorney general to cancel the request for mutual legal assistance and if so, when was this done and why?
4. Since the third investigation related to possible serious offences under the Prevention of Corruption Act, did the ICAC enlist the cooperation of the United Kingdom authorities under Chapter 4 of the Convention?
5. Since the third investigation concerned the possible involvement of an individual who is a resident of the United Kingdom and given that the attorney general had cancelled the request for mutual assistance made to the UK and no evidence could therefore be gathered from that individual in the UK, did the ICAC interview the said individual when he was in Mauritius last month?
6. Since the only exception to the rule on confidentiality seems to be under section 81 (4) of POCA for purposes of publication in the press and the prime minister has disclosed information, regarding investigations into the above matters by the ICAC, purportedly obtained from the ICAC, will you state for the benefit of the public under what provisions of the law has the ICAC communicated such information to the prime minister?
Our queries do not relate to the substantive aspects of the investigation/s still under way – as announced by the prime minister – but only to the procedural aspects of the investigations, past or current. We are confident that you will under powers granted to you by law, determine that the information sought for purposes of publication in the press is in the public interest as the investigation announced by the prime minister may potentially involve the prime minister himself and he should not be put in the embarrassing situation of having to answer parliamentary questions in relation to a matter in which he may potentially be implicated. Surely, it would be in the public interest for the ICAC itself to provide to the public clarifications regarding the above investigations.
Thanking you, Sir, for your kind collaboration.
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