Yet another lawmaker has expressed concern over the recent spate of arrests of public officials for allegedly breaking rules as they executed their duties in office.
Previously, both Public Works Minister Kye Rymer and Health Minister Marlon Penn both shared concerns about these arrests for the criminal offence of Breach of Trust and noted the need for clearer standard operating procedures for public servants as they carry out their day-to-day activities.
Those concerns have come in the wake of charges of Breach of Trust against former Education Minister Myron Walwyn; his former Permanent Secretary Lorna Stevens; former BVI former Postmaster General Pascha Stoutt; and former Director of the International Affairs Secretariat Najan Christopher.
Now, Fourth District Representative Mark Vanterpool has frowned upon the appearance of hypocrisy with the BVI’s administering power in the United Kingdom (UK), highlighting that local officials are being charged even as UK officials appear to have escaped unscathed from their own apparent breaches.
“I hear a lot of breach of trust things happening around the days today — people being charged for Breach of Trust. But I wonder how many people in United Kingdom going to be charged for Breach of Trust after the [Liz] Truss administration, and after the other administration,” Vanterpool said recently.
“You know how much money the United Kingdom lost in a short while? You know where the pound went? You know where the inflation issue went because of certain administration, leaderships?” Vanterpool asked.
The government legislator expressed confusion and said he didn’t understand how persons in the Virgin Islands
must be “thrown in jail [for] Breach of Trust”.
“I don’t quite understand the Breach of Trust story up to now. Somebody explain to me,” Vanterpool stated. “But if it is what it is that we’re here under Breach of Trust, I hope other people can be under Breach of Trust.”
Vanterpool is not the first or the only one to suggest hypocrisy in the wake of those charges. Some sections of the public have expressed that Christopher’s arrest, in particular, was unfair; especially since Police Commissioner Mark Collins faced no consequences for his alleged role in a viral video that portrayed the BVI as a crime-infested jurisdiction.