BVI News

Governor urges residents to view Register of Interests

Governor John Rankin. (Photo provided)

Governor John Rankin has urged residents to view the Register of Interests for members of the House of Assembly (HOA); disclosing that he inspected the register and paid the relevant fee to do so on January 17.

“I am most grateful to the Registrar for her assistance in this matter. Although I cannot under the present law reproduce what I saw, I would encourage members of the public to similarly inspect the register in accordance with their right under the Register of Interests (Amendment) Act 2022,” Governor Rankin said.

Under Section 9 of the Act, the Registrar shall on written request make the Register available for public inspection during normal working hours. Under the Act, the person inspecting the register must pay a $15 fee for each member of HOA he/she wishes to inspect. The person inspecting the register also cannot make a copy or take photographs of any matter contained in the register.

The Governor has made clear that the amendments made by the HOA means this Act severely restrains the degree of public access to the Register and runs counter to the principle of transparency and the intent underlying the commitment made by the government.

In the Framework for Implementation of the Commission of Inquiry (COI) report, the House of Assembly agreed to make the register public.

While he ultimately assented to the Act months after it was passed, the Governor said this was only being done with the clear expectation that the House of Assembly will return to this subject within one year.

According to Governor Rankin, this is because of the commitment by lawmakers to design and develop a new system for the registration of interests to cover both elected and public officials.

This commitment received much pushback from public servants after they were belatedly made aware that their financial interests were being made public. Lawmakers later decided to exclude this component from the new Act.

The Governor said the revised system should be based on international best practices, accompanied by an implementation plan inclusive of costs for the introduction and maintenance of the new system.

Rankin is expected to report on the progress of this matter in his next quarterly report this month.

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13 Comments

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  1. Lead by example. says:

    What about your register of interest Governor. Are you so above reproach that you could do nothing wrong? The BVI has a lot of opportunities for someone in your position to personally capitalize on and gain. Oh! Are we to expect that because you are the governor that you are as clean as a whistle? Lead by example. You should also declare your interest. It seems as if the laws only apply to us.

    Like 8
    Dislike 43
  2. What!!!! says:

    Register of interests for all ministers should be made public without one have to go to an office and pay a fee to see them.
    Why are they fighting this if they have nothing to hide?

    Like 49
    Dislike 3
  3. Falls short says:

    At the Land Registry you pay a fee to do a title search on a parcel of land and then pay again for an official copy of the that parcel’s Registry. Why can’t the same be done at the Interest Registry?

    Like 10
    Dislike 7
  4. whats good for the goose is also good for the gander says:

    We want access to the governor own too…Fair is fair

    Like 5
    Dislike 12
  5. Hope he is not one says:

    No racist should be governor of the bvi

    Like 2
    Dislike 16
  6. @Lead by example says:

    You are correct, that law does not apply to the Governor, so bravo.

    That said, the governor ought to be required to publicly declare his interests.

    I do doubt that he has invested into the BVI. He will read these blogs and understand that simply being a foreigner here, he is apparently despised and unwanted. That simply by being a white man, he is apparently by default, a racist. I am sure he simply cannot wait for his posting to end.

    Like 14
    Dislike 3
  7. God and God Alone says:

    The Governor’s interest is sinking politicians behind the veil of a COI.

    Like 1
    Dislike 3
  8. Wickedness says:

    We will get more of this bullying if we do not resolve to chart our way for self determination. People do you see and feel the oppression, the corporal punishment (figuratively) and the parent/child style of leadership? You all carry on with this UK/Governor dictatorship and your grandchildren and those to follow will see and feel the ramifications of your actions.

    WHY, TELL ME WHY HE WANTS TO BE ABLE TO TAKE COPIES AND PHOTOGRAPHS OF OUR REGISTER OF INTERESTS?

    Mind you, BARRY SAY YOU WILL HEAR!

    Like 4
    Dislike 7
  9. ulisses says:

    We do not want a white male governor ever.

    Like 2
    Dislike 7
  10. Common sense says:

    Well, from the likes and dislikes to your comment, you are clearly in the minority here. The HM Governor is an employee of the British Government, he is fully answerable to them, not anyone in the BVI. The sad reality here is, if the UK does take control, it will probably be because of people like you.

    Like 5
    Dislike 4
  11. Resident says:

    Thank you UK and thank you Governor for pushing this important issue through.

    Now please get on and implement ALL the other COI recommendations so tax payer residents can live and work in a properly functioning Territory, not one auditioning to be Haiti.

    Like 6
    Dislike 1
  12. @Lead by example says:

    Who ever is pressing dislike on this don’t really care about transparency and accountability. They have interest in these as it relates to our local leaders. I still believe that UK operatives are on the blogs trying to sway public opinion. Why would anyone oppose this post?

  13. @ Common Sense says:

    If he is an employee of the British Government and fully answerable to them then why are we picking up his tab/expenses including that of his concubine whenever she visits?

    You and others should be grateful that the people of the BVI have mellowed out over the years. I encourage you to get one of the BVI history books and READ. In fact, in my opinion we have eaten too much of the ‘docile’ pie and are now on our backs waiting for deliverance.

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