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Feb 15, 2021

Hugo Patt Bought G.O.B. Vehicle Without Formal Approval from Finance Minister

Dean Barrow

According to Barrow, three persons were allowed to purchase their assigned vehicle before the November eleventh election. One of those persons is the former Deputy Prime Minister Hugo Patt. Patt bought a 2020 Toyota Tacoma for sixty-five thousand dollars.  While his request had the support of the former Prime Minister, Barrow’s formal approval as Minister of Finance was never given. The other approved buyers were former Senator Doctor Carla Barnett and retired President of the Court of Appeal Justice Manuel Sosa. Barrow defended his approval of the sales.


Dean Barrow, Former Prime Minister and Minister of Finance

“The only other exception in the run up to the General Elections  came by way of a request from the then Deputy Prime Minister the honourable Hugo Patt. Again the Deputy Prime Minister went directly to the Financial Secretary who came to me. I spoke to the DPM and said to him, but you know the policy. I thought that also as a special favour, I would agree and I so indicated to Joe Waight What happened thereafter though was that the usual requirement from me that there would be a customs valuation so we can document that we were not selling for any undervalue did not happen. I don’t know whether it was because that didn’t happen or whether it was some other reason, whether it fell through but that one did not come to me for my formal approval. Now understand that I am not trying to any way act like some artful dodger, I had said and I repeat, orally I had agreed. If it had come with the customs valuation I would affix my initials behind the words I approve but it did not come so properly speaking I never approved that one.  Mister Justice Sosa during his entire tenure on the Court of Appeal refused to have any policeman and refused the offer of a driving to be paid for by government. Those two things over that twenty-one year period saved the government a great deal of money. It my view it would have been churlish, mean spirited in the extreme not to have acceded to the request of Mister Justice. So I told Joe, I certainly support it. Of course be sure to get a valuation from customs. That was done and the file then came to me, all done by Joe, the valuation the communications with Mister Justice Sosa and then the file came to me with the usual request for the sale to mister Justice Sosa for the price fixed in consequence of the customs valuation and I approve and initials and dated that. Doctor Carla Barnett who was as you know a senator and who was not coming back into government no matter, regardless of the results of the elections whichever  way it went Carla Barnet was not coming back. She spoke to Joe and then spoke to me and then listened, I‘ve been a consultant and she has served all over the place, she said look I am going back out and I’ll be in effect her words not mines the mercy of the world, I won’t have the money to buy another vehicle in a better condition than the one I am currently driving. I would wish for you to make an exception to the policy that you’ve laid down and allow me to purchase my vehicle.”

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