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Nov 21, 2019

P.U.P. Case Against G.O.B. Wraps Up, Judgment Pending

Julius Espat

The case suit against the Minister of Finance, the Financial Secretary and the Attorney General hinges on four main points and at the conclusion of the hearing, Espat told the media that the attorney for the government conceded to two of those four claims pertaining to the supplementary appropriation.  Judgment in the matter has been reserved until January twenty-first, 2020.  Here’s what PAC Chairman Espat shared with the media following the trial.

 

Julius Espat, Chairman, Public Accounts Committee

“From what I understood, we had four claims and two of them the attorney conceded.  The important one was in the Auditor General’s Report, the 2012/2013 report where she stated that money was spent without parliament’s approval.  They conceded, so they said that was unconstitutional.  It was not the judge saying that, it was the defense attorney saying that.  They agreed that it was unconstitutional.  The second one was, all the supplementary appropriations that were listed which is close to one point three billion dollars, they conceded that that was also unconstitutional.  The two other topics that were discussed were the unconstitutionality of the Finance and Audit Reform Act when it pertains to using a contingency fund instead of the consolidated fund.  That had arguments back and forth and I don’t see how they can win that but judgment is reserved for that.  And the other one is the legality or if it’s constitutional what they did with the amendment to the PetroCaribe Loan Act.  That one had debates back and forth and I still cannot see how the judge will go against that one.  But we can definitely say that two of four they have conceded already on the unconstitutionality.  What was revealing to me was that they’re not saying that they were right.  They’ve agreed that they were wrong, now they are pleading to the court and asking for leniency because we da wahn lee Caribbean nation and da soh we do things.”


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