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Nov 20, 2019

PAC Chairman Weighs in on Fin Sec’s Testimony

Julius Espat

In court, the issue of accountability for a hundred million dollars, spent during the fiscal year 2012 and 2013, was raised before the Financial Secretary.  According to PAC Chairman, Julius Espat, that figure had also been flagged previously by Auditor General Dorothy Bradley in her Audit Report for that period in question.

 

Julius Espat, Chairman, Public Accounts Committee

“This is a professional you are dealing with.  His testimony said that he was financial secretary for over twelve years if I am not mistaken.  The prime minister is one of the leading attorneys in the country before he became prime minister.  There is no way that they slipped.  When the question was asked of the Auditor General’s Report 2012/2013, close to a hundred million dollars for that year alone, was there a special warrant issued?  No.  Did it get approval from the House?  No.  Did you even try retrospectively, after twelve years to seek approval?  No.  And then, that’s only 2012/2013.  In the 2013/2014 Auditor General’s Report there is over two hundred million dollars again.  Every year the pattern continues and it’s a problem because the constitution basically tells you that you cannot take that money out of Consolidated Revenue Fund.  It has to come out of the contingency fund.  When the legal attorney requested and asked him, is there a contingency fund established?  He said no.  And so he knows what they did was wrong.  In fact, he testified that he advised the prime minister that it was wrong.  So that’s not just like how you’re saying it.”

 

The case continues on Thursday.


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