Jun 02, 2016 News
Bharrat Jagdeo, the former President and Leader of the main Parliamentary Opposition – the People’s
Progressive Party/Civic (PPP/C), stated that officials, who the audit report would have been found to be corrupt, should be charged and placed before the courts.
Jagdeo made this announcement during a Press Conference at Freedom House, Georgetown yesterday.
The Forensic Audits that were made public over the last months have highlighted various irregularities that were being portrayed by – but not limited to – the Heads of several Government agencies.
The misappropriation of funds, the abuse of power, monies spent for events that were never held, the overriding of agency policies; etc. were some of the conclusions that the various auditing agencies had arrived at.
“We’ve made it clear in all of the audits, that anytime you find anyone who is corrupt, or has broken the law, you should charge these people. The State should proceed to lay charges against them. They will have to use the mechanism of the court to establish whether they are innocent or not,” he said.
The former President asserted that the PPP/C has a greater confidence in the court than in the government being “fair”.
“…If you look at the audits, how they started, the partisan people were selected to do many of the audits,” he added.
Jagdeo stated that due to this, it has created some concerns and the party is therefore requesting that foreign or “nonpartisan” persons or agencies carry out these investigations in the future.”
He added that auditors should give agencies and agency Heads a chance to respond to what he deemed as “allegations”.
He continued that in many cases, agencies would have responded and no account was made in the reports of them doing so. Many were not given the opportunity to respond to allegations that were levelled against them.
“There are many allegations almost on a daily basis…Now it’s time to prove these allegations – it’s put up or shut up and I have argued that one way of putting up was to agree to our motion in Parliament – let us make public our tax records and our assets we declared so the whole country will see it.
“Another way is to launch an international investigation into former Presidents, all Members of Parliament (MPs), not just ours – everyone, so it’s seen as nonpartisan (for those who have assets abroad; bank accounts abroad,” Jagdeo stated.
The motion that Jagdeo was referring to was an opposition motion that was suppressed in Parliament as the party sought to have all Members of the National Assembly make public their tax returns to the Guyana Revenue Authority (GRA) over the last 10 years.
Meanwhile, several submitted forensic reports had recommended to have criminal charges laid against agency Heads.
One example was the audit into the National Industrial and Commercial Investments Limited (NICIL) where criminal charges were recommended against the company’s Chief Executive Officer (CEO), Winston Brassington, over a plethora of irregularities were revealed.
The audit into the Guyana Marketing Agency (GMC) had called for the termination of an engineer, Hanniel Madramootoo, after he allegedly stood by as a foreign contractor defaulted on a construction contract.
The auditor found that the payments for the construction vouchers were certified by Madramootoo. The auditor subsequently went on to recommend criminal charges.
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