The territory’s Opposition Leader, Andrew Fahie wants an amendment to the ‘status quo’ on how funds are borrowed on behalf of the British Virgin Islands.
His call comes weeks after the House of Assembly approved for government to borrow $65 million from the Caribbean Development Bank (CDB). Only six of 13 parliamentarians (the minimum majority) voted in favour of the loan.
Fahie complained that government was allowed to increase the territory’s national debt without demonstrating accountability or transparency.
“We are going to have to change the rules for the House of Assembly in that before you can go to negotiate a loan you have to come to the House to explain what you are going for the loan for, the amount, and a detailed listing of what it is you are proposing to approach any bank with,” he told BVI News yesterday.
“Don’t just to come back when we have done it. The House of Assembly has to approve the loan.”
Seven days to come clean
And while speaking at an annual event in the First Electoral District on Sunday, Fahie also demanded that government ‘come clean’ with residents.
“Let us be straight-up on this one. I am calling on the Minister of Finance (Premier Dr D Orlando Smith), and I demand that within seven days he give a detailed breakdown of how the $65 million loan from CDB will be spent, how it will be monitored, and give us the names of each of the members of the board who will be charged with monitoring the fund. The people demand answers,” Fahie said.
Asked about his plans if the Finance Minister does not comply, Fahie responded: “We will just hold with that for now.”
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