Governor John Rankin has announced that he received the Commission of Inquiry (COI) report yesterday, April 4 but the length of the report means he will need to take some time to read and consider the findings.
Rankins said the Commission’s report is long and detailed with almost 1,000 pages and more than 40 recommendations.
“I appreciate that there is a lot of interest in the Report, but I hope you will understand that I will need some time to read and consider the findings and all of the Commissioner’s recommendations. I will not be making any further statements on the Report until I have done so,” Rankin said.
Governor Rankin also that noted he shared a copy of the report with the Amanda Milling, the United Kingdom Minister for Overseas Territories and there will also be a need to discuss the Report’s findings and recommendations with BVI political leaders.
“During his visit to the UK in November, the Honourable Premier suggested to the Minister for the Overseas Territories a meeting in London for this purpose, and the two discussed this again during the latter’s recent visit to BVI. I have confirmed with the Premier that he is content with this approach,” Rankin said.
The governor said once he has completed his review of the COI
report, he will announce the next steps including details about the access to the report for elected and other officials, any other person with good reason to see the report before making it public.
“It is my hope that I will be able to publish the Report in full, though I must first assess whether it is in the public interest to do so. I will review the Report as quickly as I can, but I trust you will agree that it is important to do so properly and not rush things. I therefore do not expect to make any further substantive statements on the Report until shortly after Easter,” Rankin said.
“In the interim period, I know that there will be speculation, and some people may try to discredit or second-guess the COI
Report and recommendations, claiming incorrectly to know what they are. But I hope the people of the BVI will recognise the need for me to carefully consider the Report in line with my duties as Governor, before further decisions on next steps are made,” the Governor continued.
Rankin said he believe this is the best interest of the territory and its good governance. The Governor also thanked the Commission for the work it conducted over the last 15 months. He noted the work they carried out a valuable service for the people of the Virgin Islands
“I am also extremely grateful to the hundreds of BVI officials, members and former members of the House of Assembly, and members of the public who have made valuable and essential contributions in helping the Commissioner to carry out his mandate,” Rankin said.