British Virgin Islands

Saturday, Oct 31, 2020

AG's Report From BVI Airways Fiasco Going Public Soon

AG's Report From BVI Airways Fiasco Going Public Soon

Barring any legal hurdles, residents may soon get more information as to what transpired in the ill-fated BVI Airways Deal that cost tax payers over $7M.
Governor Augustus Jaspert today, November 1, announced that the report that Auditor General (AG) Sonia Webster commenced more than a year ago into the BVI Airways saga will soon be ready for release.

The Governor did not provide an exact date, but did note that he anticipates the report soon, and noted that the media will get access to it.

“The Auditor General has been working very hard on her report into the BVI Airways. That report is now concluding and it will be given to me. And after that point, I believe up to a period of three months it will become public; so that will be coming forward shortly,” the Governor stated.

When prompted further as to whether this was an enquiry he requested, the Governor explained that his office does not commission reports.

“I didn’t commission them (the Office of the Auditor General). The Auditor General operates independently and she can look at any area that she deems warrants an investigation. We discuss areas, but she also looks at areas herself.

During a similar sit down with the media in July last year the Governor briefly mentioned the audit. He was at the time vague on details such as scope and date of commencement. The disclosure on the matter came in response to questions about public concerns.

While, noting that he is aware of some of the matters of public interest, Governor Jaspert mentioned that the audit was in progress. He announced, “BVI Airways, I know there is a lot of debate going on that, and I am pleased the auditor general is looking into that; and investigating what’s happened with BVI Airways.”

Being pressed for additional details on the audit His Excellency said, “The Auditor General is looking at it…BVI Airways – it’s a lot of money; and… there are separate issues that the Premier has talked about – approaches on the contracts, you know having a look at that.”

The deal with BVI Airways was struck under the former National Democratic Party (NDP) administration and included Government providing tax dollars to help fund the airline's operation, but then the deal fell through as the airline never could not deliver. The Government is still trying to trace and collect the funds poured into the failed deal.
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