There are no real criminal cases to be made (Part 2)

first_imgDear Editor,There have been adverse criticisms of our entry into direct negotiations with Mr. Jerry Gouveia and sale to him of adjacent properties for extension of his hotel and hospitality business. We had done similarly and somewhat earlier with Mr. Michael George, for the expansion of his Herdmanston hotel. The unit selling price of land to Movietown seems to occasion another of the recent charges of malfeasance, but the sale of land in the same area to Giftland was at a somewhat lower unit price; and the sale of land in the same area to Mr. Boyer (another malfeasance case) for a middle to upper end housing development was by open bid, which he won and at a price above our minimum required price. I can express the assurance that we, PPP/C, were in no way less warm and encouraging to Mr. Beepat through his much-extended construction period, and as he sought allocation and/or a say in the use of adjacent land in a way which would have enhanced and not detracted from his project. I recall happily touring the construction site at least twice with him, and freely expressing my appreciation of his determination to bring a new, upgraded shopping experience to Guyana and his fellow Guyanese.Editor, there are three reasons for me to state again my concern and consequent call on our Government to put aside, as soon as we could, those unfounded, grossly grossly exaggerated allegations of huge corruption.Firstly, as I see it, our Government, seemingly believing its own propaganda, has been misdirecting itself. How else can I think of their unquestioning rush, on entering office, to greatly raise their own levels of pay (as if billions of dollars were to appear), but later extending to our public servants much less than they had promised them; pleading that after their increases to themselves, it became evident that there was not enough money to provide rank and file public servants with the increases they had promised them!Further, the approximately fifty corrupt scandals that we, PPP/C, have documented during the three years of our Coalition Government seem to suggest that our Coalition Government, relying on their allegations of huge PPP/C corruption, have been behaving as if they had licence to do as they pleased.How else can we understand the transactions of the drug bond and the perverse frustration of the notice to end that lease early. Again, they have tainted appropriate approaches to our taking responsibility for our development, such as the Berbice Bridge as well as the key development Agency – NICIL – created by the PNC in mid-1980s on returning to Private Sector-led development. We can recall the different positions and ambiguities on the continued existence and role for NICIL which do not augur well for its successful operation.Secondly, until our Government can resolve and clarify these grossly exaggerated allegations of corruption, there would be so much smoke and confusion around, our country would be set for real corruption – a real concern with the prospects of huge flows of money from oil.Thirdly, without an earnest resolution of those corruption allegations, the prospects for a less acrimonious, more constructive relationship between us, PPP/C, and the Coalition are slim, even as we, PPP/C, persevere in that desire and concur with former President Carter’s recent call for such. It is pertinent to recall here the conciliating suggestion made some time ago by our much maligned Leader of the Opposition, that our Coalition Government retain an external, agreed, hopefully impartial accounting group to review those forensic audits, so that together as a nation we could conclusively deal with them in a timely way and get them off the table, removing that major distraction from the development of people and country, which should be our common bonding concern.Yours truly,Samuel AA HindsFormer PrimeMinisterand Former Presidentlast_img read more