British Virgin Islands

Thursday, Apr 15, 2021

Jaspert’s approach to COI irresponsible and damaging

Jaspert’s approach to COI irresponsible and damaging

While the narrative of a fair and transparent Commission of Inquiry (COI) remains at the forefront of Premier Andrew Fahie’s recent statements, he also said he believes the approach by the immediate past governor Augustus Jaspert was irresponsible and damaging to the territory.

Premier Fahie made the comment recently as a guest on the social media talk show programme, ‘ZoeJ Says’ with host Zoe Walcott. He expressed his dissatisfaction with Jaspert’s methodology.

“We are concerned with the process taken that it is a conclusion already written, just going through the formality looking for a story. I have seen the public relations stunt that has come out, it is irresponsible of the governor what he has done in terms of how he has done it, not the Inquiry, but how it has been done,” Fahie stated.

“It is irresponsible statements even to make it seem as if the entities in the BVI being the police, being the auditor general, being all the other arms that are constitutionally set up to ensure good governance has failed,” he added.

Why blame the government?


The Premier also raised questions into why some of the entities under the portfolio of the past governor that have been under the microscope over the past years are not also being investigated by the COI.

“That is irresponsible because the police is under the governor and the Commissioner of Police, so if it is failing, you can’t blame the local government. How come he didn’t call the Commission of Inquiry on those entities under him that is failing,” he asked.

“If the governor wanted information to be able to substantiate whether the allegations or the information reaching him is so, there’s no way he can tell the public that he could not receive it because he is the head of the public service and I have seen him written and direct public officers already to bring information to him,” Fahie further said.

A direct attack on the BVI


The leader of government business said he believes the Commission will be used in an attempt to prevent the BVI from advancing along the lines of self-determination.

“That cannot be an indictment on the sitting local government to subliminally tie the local government into the drug busts and make it seem as if the government is corrupt through these drug busts is another subliminal message that needs to be dealt with in the public domain because they’re doing it internationally,” Fahie argued.

“What has been done by the governor is a direct attack on the British Virgin Islands and to have the UK representative read it in the House exactly when he (the governor) stated his statements, shows that they have already tried us in the court of public opinion and have already brought us in guilty,” the Premier stated.

Fahie said he believes the UK will use the COI as a medium to gain support from the international world in their narrative that the BVI is corrupt.

This, he said, which will assist in getting support to suspend the territory’s effort in advancing towards a constitutional review.

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