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Fahie wants ‘bully’ government further disciplined

Governor John Duncan arrives outside the Hose of Assembly today to deliver his Throne Speech

Governor John Duncan arrives outside the Hose of Assembly today to deliver his Throne Speech

Leader of the Opposition Andrew Fahie has outlined a number of strong actions he would like Governor John Duncan to take towards improving governance in the British Virgin Islands before his tenure ends in August.

Fahie’s requests come a day after Governor Duncan used his constitutional powers to force Government to allocate an additional $800,000 to the Royal Virgin Islands Police Force (RVIPF) this fiscal year.

While noting that he too had been pleading for Government to adequately fund the RVIPF, Fahie raised concern about other issues the government of Premier Dr D Orlando Smith has refused to address.

“There is NO transparency. Accountability does NOT exist. Conflict of Interest is at an all-time high,” Fahie wrote in a statement released to the press today, March 17.

THE FULL STATEMENT READS:

Governor John Duncan, at an impromptu press conference held on the steps of the Government Administration Building on Thursday 16th March 2017, announced that within 24 hours he would be invoking Section 103 of the Constitution.

This section allows the governor to authorize an additional $800,000 expenditure to the Royal Virgin Islands Police Force (RVIPF).

The governor assured that he shall also be monitoring the expenditure closely.

The Governor, in his press conference, cited that: “One of the big problems we have had is the failure to disburse funds. The premier has been repeatedly given instructions to disburse, and they have not been disbursed.”

Within four hours of the pronouncement, the Premier of the Virgin Islands Dr the Honourable D Orlando Smith issued a midnight broadcast, and practically refuted the primary reasons cited by His Excellency for his actions.

Ladies and gentlemen, this war of words between the governor and the premier comes at a time when families are mourning the loss of their loved ones to senseless murders.

These words come at a time when gun crimes have escalated to untenable heights.

They come at a time when my colleague from District Two, our citizens, and the wider population are demanding increased monitoring, together with swift and decisive actions by the RVIPF.

You will excuse me if I am not distracted by these war of words.

I have stood on the floor of the House of Assembly on numerous occasions, and have advocated for increased funding for the defense of our people.

It has been publicly stated that the failure to prioritize our national expenditure is alarming and unsustainable.

The economy is NOT robust. There is NO transparency. Accountability does NOT exist. Conflict of Interest is at an all-time high.

Leader of the Opposition Andrew Fahie

Leader of the Opposition Andrew Fahie

The governor has announced that it is not proper to vacate his office in August of 2017 without resolving some of the ills developed during his tenancy.

Funding of the RVIPF is a GREAT start.

Here are a few others:

1) The House of Assembly has not received audited financial statements in ten years. This is a constitutional issue that must be corrected before August 2017, and must not be left to succeeding governors.

The Attorney General and the House of Assembly (HOA) have refused to seek a proper interpretation of what constitutes Conflict of Interest, and what contracts would require the permission of the HOA prior to being entered into by members of the HOA. This is a constitutional issue that must be corrected before August 2017, and must not be left to succeeding governors.

3) At the cruise port development project, over $30 million has been expended in excess of the amounts approved in the House of Assembly. This is a constitutional issue that must be investigated before August 2017, and must not be left to succeeding governors. No more parsing of words.

4) Eight million dollars was diverted from loan proceeds approved by the House of Assembly for the East End/Long Look Sewerage project to the BVI Ports Authority, without being deposited to the BVI Treasury or without proper approval. This is a constitutional issue that must be corrected before August 2017, and must not be left to succeeding governors.

The people of the Virgin Islands will address the other political reckless decisions made by this government at an appropriate time: The $7 million disbursed to the airline; the $1 million spent on a $300,000 wall around the high school; the implementation of a sixth form when absolutely nothing was in place for it to function; the $16 million from Social Security for road works that is still not properly accounted for; schools without sanitary supplies; the public library has now been closed for one year and to date the House of Assembly has not been given the budget for its relocation or the operational expenses required for its operations.

There exist some unwritten words at the windows of the Treasury of the Virgin Islands – NOTHING THERE!

It is interesting but consistent to observe without exception, not even to the governor, that everyone that seeks to highlight any of the ill-fated decisions of this government falls under their unrelenting and bullying wrath even at the midnight hour.

I shall not be deterred nor bullied, because my interest is of that of the safety and security of the people and visitors of the Virgin Islands.

Copyright 2017 BVI News, Media Expressions Limited. All Rights Reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or distributed.

23 Comments

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  1. okay now says:

    Well-loved. Like or Dislike: Thumb up 28 Thumb down 0

    I agree with Fahie right about now

  2. No more says:

    Well-loved. Like or Dislike: Thumb up 26 Thumb down 0

    We are tired of this bully Minister & his bully NDP.

  3. Imagine says:

    Well-loved. Like or Dislike: Thumb up 25 Thumb down 0

    Imagine the NDP spend a million dollars on an over priced and unbudgeted school wall project but couldn’t give the police an extra eight hundred thoisand dollars. Smdh.

  4. people says:

    Well-loved. Like or Dislike: Thumb up 21 Thumb down 0

    In any country where law & order matters would investigate any elected official who is doing more than their salary allows. But in the BVI…yes we’re different!

  5. who to believe says:

    Well-loved. Like or Dislike: Thumb up 35 Thumb down 1

    The Premier saying the Governor is lying? To me the Premier is trying to bully the Governor to make him afraid of the NDP. I hope the Governor doesn’t fall for that.

  6. time says:

    Well-loved. Like or Dislike: Thumb up 31 Thumb down 0

    It is time for the Ports project to be investigated especially the land side. What took place is ridiculous & cannot be allowed to go just so.

  7. clearly says:

    Well-loved. Like or Dislike: Thumb up 31 Thumb down 0

    Clearly the ndp feels they can destroy anyone who doesn’t see things the same as them. They even attacking the Governor. What a set of bully indeed.

  8. lol says:

    Well-loved. Like or Dislike: Thumb up 20 Thumb down 1

    The government gives platitudes and Glover Parks spin the Governor takes action and we have a problem? Time for the COI on the Pier Park!

  9. Scary Mary says:

    Well-loved. Like or Dislike: Thumb up 29 Thumb down 1

    The Premier’s acerbic tone towards the Governor indicates to me that something quite sinister is afoot.

    I believe with every ounce of my being that this government is actually TRYING to force the UK’s hand into imposing UK control over the territory. I believe the purpose of doing so is to rally the voters AGAINST the UK and in a bid to fast-track independence.

    Several members of Government have a very cozy relationship with the Chinese, and I believe the plan is to throw in with the Chinese, the minute independence is gained.

    Each time the NDP has been in power, they have reduced the budget for the police and crime has risen substantially as a result. The proof is in the number of murders and other violent crimes that have taken place each time they were in power.

    Each time the VIP came back into power, they increased the police budget, hired more police and the crime rate dropped. BIG surprise!

    They have basically ignored every single request the Governor has made ON BEHALF OF THE PEOPLE!

    We STILL haven’t seen even ONE financial report from this government since they came back into power in 2011. How is that even possible?

    Where is the Human Rights Commision we have been promised and which was provided for in our constitution of 2007? THERE STILL ISN’T ONE after ten long years!

    Where is our Whistleblower Act? THERE ISN’T ONE!

    Why hasn’t the roof at the prison been fixed? It’s been nearly three years since that request was made!

    The Government continues to attack the FREEDOM OF THE PRESS, which is a sure-fire indication of impending totalitarianism and something that communist China, Russia and North Korea have in common.

    We are STILL experiencing water shortages, power outages, the roads are STILL a complete mess, BVI Airways STILL isn’t flying, we STILL haven’t seen any audit report regarding the Tortola Pier Project and landside development.

    Where is the audit report for the TPP project we were promised and which the taxpayers have presumably paid for?

    Why has our Premier allowed certain elected officials to stay in office without declaring their financial interests, which is a REQUIREMENT?

    NOTHING the Governor has done or has requested is out of order. He is trying to protect us from our own Government, but does not seem to be getting much co-operation.

    That in and of itself tells me a LOT about the future intentions of our Government and the way they are headed.

  10. ndp heckler says:

    Well-loved. Like or Dislike: Thumb up 18 Thumb down 0

    The governor need to do the same thing for the contractors and vendors that the government owe

  11. vip heckler says:

    Poorly-rated. Like or Dislike: Thumb up 0 Thumb down 20

    Hidden due to low comment rating. Click here to see.

  12. man from boy says:

    Well-loved. Like or Dislike: Thumb up 16 Thumb down 0

    WHERE IS MR. MOUTH WALWIN IN ALL THIS?

    • @man from boy says:

      Like or Dislike: Thumb up 0 Thumb down 0

      The bully minister is too busy trying to organize how to fulfill his number one priority which is how to try to destroy Fahie.

  13. well sah says:

    Poorly-rated. Like or Dislike: Thumb up 2 Thumb down 15

    Hidden due to low comment rating. Click here to see.

  14. Ah boy says:

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 0 Thumb down 0

    The NDP don’t want to properly fund the police because they don’t want them looking into them only the street. It is as simple as that.

  15. Hogplum says:

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 0 Thumb down 0

    It is unfortunate that in 2017, the Willie Lynch Ideal is still in effect.

    We continue to look to the colonial master to solve our problems. He will not seek solutions that are in our best interest. He will seek solutions that serve only his and Britain’s objectives. Be careful what you wish for people.

    Andrew himself is being used to achieve the objectives of the U.K., but as it has been with so many others of our leaders, he is too hungry for power to see that. We need to wake up people.

  16. voiceofthevoiceless says:

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 0 Thumb down 0

    Finally the Governor takes action! He did sound the warning when he criticized the Government for lack of priority when it comes to spending so it must have been a prelude to this. What took him so long?

    He leaves in August so is it about legacy? The vacation is over and it is time to work? Or has he been calculated in his approach? Maybe there are more interventions to come?

    Andrew Fahie’s response is the best of all of the responses summoning the Governor to don’t stop there but to use his powers to force the Government to present the audited financials, enact the FOI legislation, present audit for TPP among other things.

  17. hurry says:

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 1 Thumb down 0

    it look like he gone sleep don’t worry he will get a beating the next time around

    can’t wait for the next election

  18. Socrates says:

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 1 Thumb down 0

    Is the Governor”s action about the NDP? Should the VI get giddy about the UK’s spanking of the NDP? Does the power sharing favour the UK and reeks of colonialism?

    Does the Reserve Powers reek of colonialism? As in Spades does the UK hold the Ace of Spaces? Are constitutional changes needed soonest for more autonomy?

    No doubt crime is rising in the BVI. But is throwing money at the problem the solution? Does the RVIPF has serious structural and other issues?

    Are residents satisfied with the presence of police on the street? Should the police be armed? Is an independent review of the needs of RVIPF needed?

    Is a commission of inquiry needed for the Tortola Pier Park? Does a full a accounting needed for the $7M flinged at BVI Airways, a defunct airline? Is better accounting needed for $16M borrowed from social security for road repairs?

    Is a full accounting needed of the transfer of funds from the East End/ Long Look sewage project to the Tortola Pier Park project? Does the financial audits for 2007-2016 need to be laid on the table at HOA now? Except for essential services should all expenditure stop until there are financial audits?

  19. concerned says:

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 1 Thumb down 0

    Could not agree more with Fahie’s 4 points! The Governor has given NDP warnings and chances, now time for action. Audits for ALL year not yet presented must come. Audit for Pier Park needs to come. Transparency needs to happen NOW. Those in wrong MUST be exposed. Fahie no angel nor is any of VIP, but at least he is trying toexpose opposition which is what he should do. Frazer shouted but nothing substantial or fact, just bluffs

  20. Big Time says:

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 1 Thumb down 0

    Good job Governor! The queen need to come and remove the whole set of them, then reset the system with fresh people…

  21. inquiring mind says:

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 2 Thumb down 0

    Once again Andrew A Fahie I commend you,Checks and balance.The only way out of this mess.

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