José Ugaz, Chair of Transparency International, issued the following statement after the Chair of our chapter in Chile, Gonzalo Delaveau Swett, resigned on Monday. His resignation from Chile Transparente happened after he was named in the Panama Papers for his alleged involvement with secret companies:
“We are deeply troubled by what has happened with the Chair of our chapter in Chile. At Transparency International we stand for transparency and integrity above all else and once we learned of Delaveau’s involvement with secret companies, our International Board began the process of suspending the chapter before possible dis-accreditation. With Delaveau’s resignation our Board decided to halt its efforts to sanction the chapter.
"It is important to note that we fully support Chile Transparente and its serious efforts to combat corruption in Chile. The actions of one person should not be held against the whole chapter.
"While Delaveau is not reportedly accused of illegal activity, and he may be able to explain his activities, for us that is not the point. Not all secret companies are illegal, but many are used to hide money flows and to support acts of corruption. As we said yesterday in a press release about the Panama Papers investigation: Transparency International wants public registers of all companies' beneficial owners to make it harder for the corrupt to hide their illicit wealth in secret companies and trusts that use nominees to register ownership.
"We are now looking into measures to ensure this does not happen again. While Transparency International chapters are independent locally governed entities, we are currently reviewing our accreditation process for an even greater level of due diligence to ensure that the Chairs and Board members of our Chapters abide by the values essential to the pursuit of our mission.”
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