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Apr 30, 2021

Was Faber Double Dipping on Rent and Housing as D.P.M.?

Patrick Faber

Was the former Minister of Education Patrick Faber double dipping from public funds while operating in the capacity as Deputy Prime Minster?  Last week in the House of Representatives, the Minister of Education Francis Fonseca, accused the former administration of entering a two year rent contract valued at three thousand dollars monthly to house the former education minister, allegedly while he was also receiving a housing allowance.  During the House Meeting, the Leader of the Opposition rose to object.  Today, he had an explanation for the arrangement, claiming at one point during the press conference that he did not even know how much he was getting in allowance.


Patrick Faber, Leader of the Opposition

“It was terribly misconstrued. At the time you would remember that I was also deputy Prime Minister, which I got no compensation for. The Deputy Prime Minister got no additional compensation as Deputy Prime Minister. And so the rental of the property was done as part and parcel of me being Deputy Prime Minister at the time. Once the situation got bad in terms of COVID, indeed the rental agreement was up, and the contract was not renewed. The Prime Minister made it very clear, in fact by that time, it was a month or so or two months after, I gave up the position of Deputy Prime Minister, so I couldn’t expect it to be renewed.”


Paul Lopez

“As I understand it, housing allowances for minster are one thousand five hundred dollars. I was made to understand that the rent, you were getting that house for double your housing allowance, and that you were also taking home your housing allowance. That is the definition of double dipping. Was such a deal only done for you or for other ministers as well?”


Patrick Faber

“I won’t comment, and I don’t know about anybody else’s situation. As I’ve said, the arrangement that was made was because I was Deputy Prime Minister and received no compensation for the additional duties that a Deputy Prime Minister does. But, if you want contrast to the situation, let me point out that it is not abnormal for the government to have a housing allocation or even offer a house for government ministers who do not reside in Belmopan, to be there.”


Paul Lopez

“So how long was this three thousand dollars rent being paid for you, while you were taking home this fifteen thousand dollars allowance?”


Patrick Faber

“I do not know what the allowances are to be honest. Those allowances go to my account. In fact, I just had to write and ask for an explanation of allowances. But, I am telling you, whatever arrangement was there was merely because I was Deputy Prime Minister.  It was not the kind of situation where once things got bad I didn’t say that’s fine. It was something that was there before. I found that situation there where they rented a house for the deputy prime Minister, and I was not from Belmopan, and I decided to make Belmopan my residence for the time while I was working there.”

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