BVI News

Governor orders Commission of Inquiry to investigate BVI gov’t

Amid recent reports that his office has received a litany of complaints regarding lack of transparency in government, outgoing governor, Augustus Jaspert today announced he has decided to issue a Commission of Inquiry (COI), in accordance with BVI’s Commissions of Inquiry Act. 

The Governor’s announcement was made via Facebook and doesn’t appear on the BVI Government website.

 A Commission of Inquiry is a body that can look impartially into matters of public concern. 

“The Commission will look into whether corruption, abuse of office or other serious dishonesty in relation to officials — elected, statutory or public — may have taken place in recent years. If so, it will consider the conditions which allowed this to take place and make independent recommendations for improvement,” Governor Jaspert said.

The governor said he’ll be hosting a press conference later this week to set out more details about the COI. He will host the conference with the judge appointed to lead the inquiry.

Who will lead the commission?

According to Governor Jaspert, the COI will be an entirely independent process led by a senior impartial judge coming from outside of the territory, the Right Honourable Sir Gary Hickinbottom. 

“This will help the Commission reach fair unbiased conclusions under local law. Furthermore, the judge will have powers under the Commission of Inquiry Ordinance to collect evidence and summon witnesses in a way that our local institutions cannot,” the Governor said.

In his statement, he also specified the complaints that his office has received that have led to the Commission of Inquiry.

“First, there are wide concerns over the lack of transparency when it comes to spending public funds, particularly those relating to COVID-19 economic stimulus support,” Jaspert explained.

“Second, there are wide concerns over the possible mismanagement of some public projects. Successive audit reports have set out practices of political interference, inflated pricing and conflicts of interest. These may have cost the public purse millions of dollars in recent years, with no sign of improvement,” the governor added.

He continued: “Third, and linked to the previous points, there are concerns over the lack of transparency relating to Government contracts. Key concerns include a lack of fair and open competition, conflicts of interest and a lack of value for money. We need to know how individuals are getting work so we can ensure equal opportunities for all.”

“Fourth, there are allegations of some political interference occurring in some statutory bodies. A number of officers from our bodies have come to me with concerns about individuals being replaced by political allies and officers being coerced into circumventing protocols and taking improper practices.”

“There are similar allegations relating to the public service and serious allegations of attempts of interference in the criminal justice system.”

“Finally, there are wide concerns about intimidation taking place across our society, public services and the media with many describing ‘a growing culture of fear’ in BVI.”

“In addition to these allegations, there is growing evidence of serious organised crime infiltrating BVI. This was made clear in November, when 2,300 kilos of cocaine, with a street value of at least $250 million, was smuggled through our borders.”

“Now let me be clear about the fact that these are allegations. However, they cannot be ignored and I must fulfil my Constitutional role to support the people and to uphold the peace, order and good governance of the Virgin Islands,” Governor Jaspert said.

 

Copyright 2021 BVI News, Media Expressions Limited. All Rights Reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or distributed.

92 Comments

Disclaimer: BVI News and its affiliated companies are not responsible for the content of comments posted or for anything arising out of use of the comments below or other interaction among the users.

  1. Yes Sah says:

    About Time!!!!!!!!!!!

    Like 114
    Dislike 2
  2. Anonymous says:

    Who will be paying Hickinbottom?

    Like 7
    Dislike 43
    • Hmmm says:

      Your comment is so condescending and pointless. Is this paid political blogging?

      Nonetheless we stand with the Governor on his quest for good governance and transparency. The foolishness has to STOP!!!

      Thank you.

      Like 81
      Dislike 4
      • Wait says:

        All the Governor’s Office does is blog all day? We need an investigation into that office too.

        Like 9
        Dislike 33
        • @Wait says:

          No one cares what Gus is saying, he and all his racist bloggers need to go home and investigate ‘their’ corrupt nation. That investigation is long overdue!

          Like 7
          Dislike 35
          • Hold up buddy says:

            I am on Gus side and I AM PROUD TO SAY I AM BLACK TO THE BLACK BLACK BUDDY. I AM NO RACIST, ALL I AM LOOKING FOR IS A BETTER BVI THE PLACE I WAS BORN ON JULY 4TH 1989 AND THE PEOPLE.

            Like 20
            Dislike 3
          • @@Wait says:

            You would be surprise to learn that I am as black as hell and is not in the Governor’s office. We need to stop pulling the race card when there is no other plausible escape route.

            The Premier is of the opinion that he can do any say whatever he wants with out recourse. Well it doesn’t work like that.

            His legacy as Premier of these Virgin Islands doesn’t look too good.

            Like 18
            Dislike 4
      • Haha says:

        Lol you know what’s funny, what was the process of appointing this particular judge, was he one of many potential candidates, The same way this guy was appointed is probably the same way most people are appointed to most government positions.

        Like 5
        Dislike 3
    • The corrupt politicians says:

      will be paying the judge with the money they stole from you (the public)

      Like 24
      Dislike 4
  3. NoNonsense says:

    Long time coming – this c*****t government and Premier will get what is due.

    Like 81
    Dislike 4
    • Hmmmm says:

      Which One?

    • @NoNonsense says:

      Please, believe me when I say this, you will also receive what is do you! Just keep messing with God’s anointed! You thing the world is in turmoil now? You will see who rules the nations of the world.

      • Bol says:

        God’s anointed?… Must be saul or David… lol… Whoever you are shup up… Yeah Esau runs the world and that’s by the will of the Most High…Lying leaders arent anointed but appointed to carry out his will also… for us to see how much of us will fall into the trap. Well predestined to..

        Amos 3:6 Shall a trumpet be blown in the city, and the people not be afraid? shall there be evil in a city, and the Lord hath not done it?

        If I were you instead of calling obviously corrupt good.. I would focus on keeping the laws because the chaos you talk about shall come but will you be prepared and will you be saved?… That’s more important okay?.

  4. Gov says:

    This is the best governor we had in BVI history!! Bring it on gov we the public would like to know the details of Claude Skelton Cline (CSC) contracts and how is it he continues to be rewarded after that failed and plagiarized attempt event by the name of 1000 jobs in 1000 days the public is well aware he took NDP initiative and jus renamed it all so the premier can continue to f**ten his pockets now he is owner of pizza business

    Like 125
    Dislike 5
    • A BIG THANK YOU says:

      AHHHHHH SUKIE SUKIE NOW. THANK YOU MR. GOVERNOR. I’LL SHOUT IT FROM THE ROOF TOPS WITH A BULL HORN, ONE OF THE BEST GOVERNOR WE HAVE HAD. THANK YOU MR. GOVERNOR. SHOW THEM YOU WAS NOT WILLING TO BE BULLIED AND MANIPULATED.

      Like 57
      Dislike 1
    • @Gov says:

      YES, YES, YES. TO MUCH CRONYISM, BULLYING, CORRUPTION AND FAVORITISM. TIRED OF THE SAME PEOPLE GETTING CONTRACTS, PEOPLE GETTING PUSHED OUT OF TOP JOBS FOR NO SPECIFIC REASONS etc… THANK YOU. PLACE THEM ALL UNDER INVESTIGATION. I DON’T SUPPORT VIP, I SUPPORT NDP. I AM PUTTING MY PREJUDICES ASIDE AND AGREE THAT BOTH PARTIES SHOULD INDEED BE INVESTIGATED.

      Like 25
      • Sue says:

        I am also a supporter of the NDP POLITICAL PARTY AND WILL ALWAYS CONTINUE TO SUPPORT THE NDP POLITICAL PARTY. I WOULD ALSO AGREE THAT THEY NEED TO BE INVESTIGATED.

        Like 17
    • Oh yeah right says:

      HE HANDS IS ALL UP IN THE PIZZA SAUCE.

      Like 4
      Dislike 1
  5. Easy says:

    Keep poking the bear and this is what happens. Hope they have their ducks in a row, let the games begin.

    Like 76
    Dislike 2
    • Bears EAT ducks says:

      Last time I checked, bears EAT ducks so they better get something else.

      Like 4
      Dislike 2
    • Yup says:

      I saw this coming two years ago and would not be surprised if an investigation has been running for at least as long.

    • Please says:

      All that will come of this is a quicker
      push for independence, long overdue! No good rulers of any nation cares what a foreign entity tries to control. In the end, independence wins!

    • @ Easy says:

      Keep poking the bear towards self-determination, this is one matter that all political parties agreed on. Gus is setting the stage for independence. He is setting us all up, but the United Kingdom will still have to pay us retributions. The prophet was right independence is around the corner!

    • Hmmm says:

      If the governor does not already have his information/evidence of the allegations, he could forget it because he will find nothing at this stage except the few letters and complaints he personally received.

  6. SMH says:

    But yet We have unsolved murders and corrupt cops. Why haven’t Scotland Yard gotten involved in these related matters where by theory, slander, or speculation, it’s the Principle of having thorough Investigation. Victims and Family Members deserve Closure.

    Like 16
    Dislike 8
    • @SMH says:

      You so s—-d: don’t you know that the unsolved murders, corrupt cops, drug bust, corruption, victimization and public service interference are all the same animal? You can’t separate them? That is why there is a public inquiry. The BVI is unsafe with this level of crime and corruption.

      Like 7
      Dislike 5
      • @SMH says:

        … and the former governor was over all of that, and now that he is done he is pushing an inquiry. Why didn’t he clean it all up when he was in office? Because he was at the helm!

    • Strange says:

      They have been silently investigating since the current Governor was appointed…and that just the smoke from the crater. The explosion is coming.

  7. Deluded says:

    Well done Gus. The Premier is deluded if he thinks he has the support of the public. I hope that people will not feel intimidated by Fahie and Co, and that they will talk openly to the Inquiry Team.

    Like 82
    Dislike 1
  8. Ok now says:

    We the people want a few investigations as part of this. First we want to investigate things after Irma and how come all the older people up to now ain’t get their homes repairing but working party supporters got. Also we want an investigation into all that land SSB buy. We want an investigation into the same things that last Government did that you now investigating. We need an investigation into the investigation. We need to investigation into the investigator and how independent he really is.

    Like 38
  9. Second time lucky says:

    Premier, this time you will not get a reprieve, this time you going down

    Like 49
    Dislike 4
  10. Ok says:

    Best news i’ve gotten all day!!

    Like 46
    Dislike 1
  11. Reply says:

    Interesting. Looks like the governor’s parting gift is this commission of inquiry. Well. I cannot say I did not see this coming.

    This is what happens when you mess with people and create needless friction and accusations, and your house does not appear clean. You play with fire, you will get burnt.

    Let the commission of inquiry begins. Too much apparent shenanigans. The streets have been whispering too long.

    We shall all brace ourselves for the expected accusations of racism next.

    Like 58
    Dislike 2
    • @ Reply says:

      No need to brace ourselves for something that has always existed! But Maybe you should brace yourself for a future without it!

  12. Right Sed Fred says:

    Can he do something about the scooters?

    Like 32
    Dislike 2
  13. Anonymous says:

    The Dog himself sang “Ting To Talk”

  14. Jane says:

    People talking about Jaspert like he is a schoolboy in short trousers rather than a professional diplomat who had served as Head of Policing, Head of Drugs in the Home Office and subsequently as the Prime Minister’s Private Secretary. He wasnt sent here to cut his teeth. He wasnt sent here as a reward for his long-service and to enjoy semi-retirement with a Painkiller in the sunshine. He was here to watch and report and to take action on corruption. The reason he didnt is because Irmamaria derailed this mission. His reputation was damaged because there was a deliberate attempt to paint him as a racist and he had to go. Expect the new governor to have zero qualms about cleaning up this place.

    Like 32
  15. deathknell says:

    not the first time for f*t trumpt to be subject to corruption allegations

    Like 18
    Dislike 1
  16. My people says:

    I can’t believe my people celebrating this. You guys one day will see the bigger picture. Black people always try to bring down each other to the benefit of other races.

    Like 4
    Dislike 43
    • @My People says:

      It’s time for black people to use their brains and rise above the foolishness. Fahie was played, plain and simple. As Premier he could have handled the issues with UK/Governor much better but instead he took an emotional route with bad advice and here we are. The BVI black people have been begging and pleading with our black leaders to change course and listen to what our concerns are and they did not. Now you are mad and playing the race card. Too late shall be the cry as this will go deep and may end up like Turks pt. 2.

      Like 33
      Dislike 1
    • LAWLESS BVI says:

      We the people are grateful for the UK. The country has become increasingly lawless and unsafe. We have these scooters in charge of the streets and I bet you the leaders love the anarchy. And we all know it is drugs running the economy. Why? Because it gives cover for dirty work. Same narrative. As soon as one set of politicians get in a set of big SUVs for the Premier and his lackeys. But till date where all the money gone? The roads still the same. Water situation still the same. A set of family and unelected people running the BVI from the Premier’s Office. Lets see where the money went – I hope a few of these people see prison, well done Gus!

      Like 33
      Dislike 2
    • Well says:

      Turks and Caicos got back their government in 2 years we can wait

      Like 15
      Dislike 1
    • Strange says:

      Dont know why you got so many dislike when you have spoken a book. Its indeed a shame that this is happening to our people.

      However, if we as a black nation must advance, we need to ensure adequate checks and balances. There should be no ‘above the law’ government ministers or officers, a change in our system of governance and religion tossed out the door.

      Like 7
      Dislike 1
      • looking says:

        We have no color. Black or white or anything else. What we are is some good people and some bad. An the bad ones run the place. Not for long tho…..

    • @My People says:

      Idiot

    • @My people says:

      I totally agree with you, but I also know that a blogger has no face on here, and comments on this news site have always been racist in the past. So although they say that they are Africans, I don’t believe them. ‘Divide and conquer’!

  17. Sandy says:

    Gus isn’t a fool and Fahie has been almost daring him to donut recently with this public stabbing….that’s not a true leader, that’s the behavior of someone with something to hide.

    Like 27
    Dislike 1
    • Anddddddd says:

      HE WAS WARNED THAT THE PASTOR WOULD BE THE DOWNFALL OF THE VIP.

      Like 20
    • @Sandy says:

      Premier thought the Governor was weak. Let’s keep things real, Premier and his cronies was always laughing and talking about the Governor was a little boy that doesn’t know anything. Who is the little boy now? Keep telling you all when you start talking, make sure the wrong people is not listening or in the CONVO.

      Like 10
  18. Joshua says:

    Hmmm well done excellency.They try to push you in a corner, and you played their game. You always had something up your sleeve Sir. By trying to write letters to hail Mary mother of Jesus and in an effort to distract you they all believed they had the last laugh. Well now the bell has been rolled, let the action begin. The incoming governor is well aware of what is going on. I say send every last one of them to prison. Anything shading let the governor take over and run the country SOLO. Check their pockets and their pocket books. To the Premier also choose who when and where to pick your fight. You came in as the sheriff you changing this and changing that. You want all power unto yourself. It wouldn’t happen. You really let down the people. They voted because of your promises. We knew who we had never knew what we would get. There is incompetence at every level in government starting at the top.

    Like 35
    Dislike 1
    • Fact says:

      He promised not to indulge in cronyism and victimization but it is rampant in statutory bodies and the public service. Enough is enough

      Like 21
    • The list says:

      they have on statutory bodies, contractors who did not support the VIP and top leaders of the civil service do not move a soul leave everyone in place until the inquiry done. Nobody moves until the inquiry done. Things to share. Switch up the acting FS and some of those Ministry Administration heads who afraid to tell ministers no too. They tried moving the lady at treasury and a few others. make them lift their hands off them and their cronies with their messy selves. Making people retire and thing.

    • Strange says:

      Words of wisdom. Next time dont vote on promises. Promises are just comfort to fools.

      Like 7
      Dislike 1
  19. CSC is bad News says:

    They knew this was coming. Why do you think that CSC launch that vicious attack on the governor trying to intimidate him,,, and he so smart he get Andrew and VIP to join with him…. Wisdom says “When your hands in the Lion’s mouth you have to be smart to get it out”. Getting the Lion angry is very unwise / foolish.

    Like 21
    Dislike 2
  20. Caroline Powell says:

    Please can we borrow your Governor? Jersey

    Like 6
    Dislike 1
  21. Pandora's Box says:

    Sorry to say, but this is just really more ‘blah, blah, blah’ from both sides that’ll go nowhere. Maybe a few little fish hung out to dry, or even the possibility of a middle sized fish being ritually gutted and sacrificed for the sake of image and substance, but other than that, business will continue as usual here!

    If something actually does happens that is more than just a war of feeble words in the press, then some of us may actually take notice and start to believe, but no one can honestly take any of this seriously considering past investigations and the patterns presented by history.

    Sorry to be so pessimistic, but that’s the way I see it!

    Like 8
    Dislike 1
  22. Deh Watcha says:

    Hehehehehe

  23. Just my 2 cents says:

    It’s my humble view that such a decision is long overdue. Accordingly, commendations must be given to the Governor. Sadly, it comes at a time when the Governor is scheduled to demit office together with the open hostility currently existing between the offices of the Governor and Premier.

    Notwithstanding, my only dissatisfaction with the Governor was his failure to revoke the appointment of the Premier and Speaker for their demonstrated levels of unsolicited and blatant disrespect.

    I trust that the Inquiry shall reveal the true levels of corruption that exist. However, given the inter-relatedness and interconnections that plague the justice system in the BVI, the Governor’s effort may be in futility.

    Like 14
  24. Interested says:

    Remember. it is both this Government and the last one.

    Like 7
    Dislike 3
  25. Whip it good says:

    THANK YOU GOVERNOR. HISTORY IN THE BVI. THE PEOPLE THANK YOU. THIS IS GOING TO CHANGE FOR THE BEST, THIS IS GOING TO CHANGE THE UNFAIRNESS, VICTIMIZATION AND CORRUPTION.

    Like 9
    Dislike 1
  26. The Accounts says:

    Please sponsor a shredder for the BVI .GOV we need a thousand shredders we’ll employ a thousand this week ,please give generously.

    Like 2
    Dislike 1
  27. Facts says:

    Gus will not prevail

    Dislike 15
  28. So tell me says:

    If this Gov so really looking out for the people of the BVI why the need to release this all to UK Sun and Guardian newspapers?

    I have no problem with a genuine COI but this Gov’s actions are questionable and if it’s a inquiry where the facts are not yet know why the big publicity.

    Before some of you rejoice you need to do your home work. More in the mortar. This was always the agenda.

    • Strange says:

      What’s facts you need again? Its all known…dating back to the days of the plane, the wall, the pier park, questionable contracts that always appears to be incomplete, the quarter billions….. What more do you want?

      The inquiry is just to quantify and identify the perpetrators.

    • Strange says:

      Did the Gov release it or there are excellent investigative journalists associated with those news outlets?

  29. Sell it says:

    That nice house on the North shore that was built on weekends, wonder where the materials came from. Sunday delivery too. Yessah.

  30. The Truth says:

    NDP bloggers talking bout Premier this, Premier that. the only people I see getting locked up is NDP and their cronies. So let the games begin lol.

    Like 1
    Dislike 3
  31. Anonymous says:

    Typical British style playing God with peoples lives. Independence is the only way, get with it BVI.

  32. Not our keeper says:

    How silly can you people be.. when in history will a white man work to so hard to be fair to black people. Even if wrong is being done fine the bvi.. but to put whites over us for them to be fair is the worst things you people can ask for.. many of them still say slavery was not that bad. Very bad for our people. White people make moves against us that our children children will feel. They are not nor will ever willingly be our keeper . They open business here and all support while we continue to hurt each other and look to them to save us.. foolish foolish foolish.. We really fall from lack of knowledge.

    Like 1
    Dislike 10
  33. Thank you says:

    Can we include tax fraud by employers in this investigation? Can we include an investigation into why the current administration turns a blind eye to employers stealing from employees and the government yet employees are penalized. This is the only place that tax fraud is goes unpunished.

  34. idea says:

    I have a gut feeling that peoples high up are involved in this cocaine bust. Premiere wasn’t too happy about it…makes me think

  35. Hmmm says:

    Good move
    The tolans will hate you more mr governor

  36. ReX FeRaL says:

    Get local straight shooters on the inquiry.There are quite a few. Levo Walters, Clement Smith, Kenneth Freeman et al….

  37. guest says:

    CRONYISM, NEPOTISM, CORRUPTION IS RAMPANT AT PWD. HOW CAN SOMONE BE YOUR SENIOR WHEN YOU HAVE TEN MORE YEARS EXPERIENCE PLUS DUAL QUALIFICATIONS? THEY NEED TO TAKE A SERIOUS LOOK AT THAT DEPT. WHY YALL THINK DEY PUSH OUT N*****O FROM PWD?

Leave a Comment

Shares