Remove Shane Dalling- The FLA Needs Sober and Competent Leadership

The Opposition has observed with concern the allegations and counter-allegations of corruption traded between two JLP operatives, both with intimate knowledge of the operations of the Firearms Licensing Authority (FLA) under the JLP administration. While it is difficult to discern the entire truth without the report of an independent investigation, it is now clear to the public that the FLA has become a cesspool of corruption over the last six years. 

The Opposition is calling for:

1.     the Minister of National Security and the Board of the FLA to remove Shane Dalling as the CEO of the FLA for poor performance, especially in light of Mr. Dalling’s own admission that he can’t fix the troubling issues plaguing the entity.  Further evidence of poor governance and non-performance of the FLA’s CEO is the fact that the controversy-riddled entity has not even submitted an Annual Report to Cabinet (as per the Cabinet Office website updated 02/2022) since 2016/17.

2.     the Integrity Commission to complete the investigation into corruption in the issuance of firearms licences by the FLA.  That investigation was launched by the  Office of the Contractor General in 2017 but was derailed by the government prematurely bringing into effect the new Integrity Commission Act, even though no transitional arrangements had been made for its operations.  While the Opposition is aware of the limited investigative resources available to the Integrity Commission, it is imperative that – given the threat to national security – this investigation be prioritized, and the report submitted to Parliament as soon as possible.

The Shadow Minister of National Security – Peter Bunting – commented “Mr. Dalling has a penchant for alarming statements to the media ranging, from the “discovery” of a gun-making machine which turned out to be a regular machine tool to his repeatedly “calling in MOCA” to investigate various allegations of corruption.  The public is not aware of a single successful prosecution (or even arrest) arising from any of these multiple disclosures.

The FLA needs sober and competent leadership to restore the integrity of the entity, and to regain the confidence of local law enforcement, our international partners, and the Jamaican public.