Beautiful Virgin Islands

Monday, May 23, 2022

Unelected bureaucrats running the BVI - Julian Fraser

Unelected bureaucrats running the BVI - Julian Fraser

Third District Representative Julian Fraser has claimed that government employees in the various ministries are the persons who are truly running the country and not those in elected office, as it should be.

Fraser made the claim during a recent Opposition press briefing while protesting the non-removal of derelict vessels from the Sea Cows Bay Harbour located in the heart of his district.

“What we have been witnessing now and in the recent past is a situation where the Ministry of Finance – and I’m talking about the bureaucrats in the Ministry of Finance – are the ones who dictate and determine where funding goes,” Fraser complained.

“There was money in the budget for the removal of those vessels in Sea Cows Bay Harbour,” the Opposition Legislator told reporters.

“When we came to a budget sitting where they had the mini-budget where they did a shuffling of funds, they took the money away. The minister didn’t even know, but the Ministry of Finance, the bureaucrats in the Ministry of finance took the money to remove those vessels in the harbour and put it to do other things. Other things, I wouldn’t even mention what those other things are.

“So you go figure, who is running the country? Is it the people who were elected to run the country or is it the bureaucrats running the country?” he asked. “So those are the problems that we have.”

I’m speaking from experience

Fraser also claimed that the Ministry of Natural Resources, which is responsible for crown lands sold to residents, has not been fulfilling its responsibility of sub-dividing those lands and ensuring that necessary infrastructure is put in place for the plots of land.

“It’s a responsibility of the government to provide those infrastructure and today they’re not doing it and people’s properties are sitting there with bush, you go figure,” he said.

“I’m telling you from experience, I’m telling you because I’ve lived it. The monies that we have for our districts today, with a budget that’s over $420 million, is minuscule to what we had back in the day when the budget was $120 million,” Fraser said.

“We have all this money going towards rent, we have all this money going towards staffing, we have all this money going towards the establishment of a new department or a new statutory body or whatever and when they come to Standing Finance (Committee), there is absolutely nothing for us, for the ministries,“ he said.


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