A conflict of interest? An explanation is needed.

According to the comments on this story opinion is split on whether former education Minister Wayne Scott is conflicted by his new job.

He stepped down from the Ministry and now has a job as the Gaming Commission’s Chief Technology officer. He is still an OBA MP.

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As of writing there were close to 100 comments on the story but a few caught my eye:

One: Will Mr Scott recuse himself if there is a vote in the House on the gaming issue?

Another: with your logic, elected officials should all be concurrently employed in the industries that they regulate. no conflict of interest there whatsoever. how exactly will Mr. S serve Bermudian taxpayers being on the payroll for two government funded positions, and one private sector position? which one of the three jobs has priority?

what about the international optics of a sitting politician working on the Commission that lobbies government for new regulations and money?

One more: If there is a vote in the House on something affecting the Gaming Commission, will mr Scott recuse himself? If he does, how will impact the Government’s non majority? Will he recuse himself from discussions that affect his new employers? Will he attend Commission meetings where they are talking about Government? This whole thing is not right and he should be asked to step down.

What really caught my eye, however, was this from a recent story in the RG: The contentious clause prevents Cabinet ministers from any involvement in the gaming industry for two years after they leave office. The same restriction applies to any parliamentarian or public officer whose responsibilities relate directly to gaming and any member or employee of the Bermuda Casino Gaming Commission. http://www.royalgazette.com/news/article/20161123/casino-legislation-will-affect-my-business which, as you can see from the story, affected Messrs Pettingill and Crockwell, both former Ministers.

The story on Mr Scott, as published, does not explain how he is apparently exempt from the two-year ban. As CTO, is he not involved in the gaming industry in some way? Why is his case different to both Mr Pettingill and Mr Crockwell?

I think both the Government and the Gaming Commission need to address these very legitimate concerns.

 

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