The ABLP announces investigations into UPP actions

Source: WNEP.com

Source: WNEP.com

Investigations will be held to determine whether there was malfeasance in public office under the Baldwin Spencer-administration.

Chief of Staff Lionel “Max” Hurst announced Friday that forensic investigations will be launched into a number of programmes and initiatives undertaken by the United Progressive Party (UPP) government.

Hurst, speaking on the ZDK Radio, said a special team has been commissioned to investigate the Wadadli Power Plant (WPP).

“They are also going to look at the CHAPA-Bau Panel arrangement. We are going to do Romantic Rhythms… $10 million per mile road” near the Sir Vivian Richards Cricket Stadium will also be investigated

“They are going to investigate the Transport Board, the Board of Education, the St John’s Development Corporation,” he said.

“(Also) the sale of crown lands, Public Works, the operation of our embassies both in Cuba and in New York.”

Hurst said Cabinet made the decision Thursday to launch the probes.

Those “scandals” became major talking points during the Antigua & Barbuda Labour Party (ABLP) election campaign.

Incidentally, the UPP was elected in 2004, in part, on promises to bring elements of the then-ALP government to justice for wrongdoing in government.

The Spencer-administration hired its own financial forensic investigator Robert Lindquist to look into malfeasance in the previous government, particularly the IHI matter, but the resulting and much talked about report has never been released nor formed the basis of any court trial.

There’s more in today’s Daily Observer.

 

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80 thoughts on “The ABLP announces investigations into UPP actions

  1. As much as I agree that a probe is needed into certain projects, the question remains if this is the right time. There are hundreds of civil servants including teachers who have yet to receive back pay and monies owed from upgrades, yet we are spending millions of dollars as did the former administration to conduct this investigation. I wonder if it would go to waste yet again as it did before where there are other important parts of our economy that could benefit from the inflow of cash since we were almost a “failed state”. Wish politicians will stop playing tit for tat and deal with my country’s affairs.

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  2. Can a doctor take over a patient from another doctor and begin treating or diagnosing without first studying the charts and history of that patient?
    Can a teacher take over a class in the middle of a semester without first finding out what was done, where the students are and what needs to be done in order to move on?
    Can a Government in office only about 2 months now, effectively ‘run the country’ and put measures and policies in place reflecting its vision/mission without first finding out what was going on? Hence IF there may be difficulties to easily identify the issues, isn’t an investigation worthwhile for the sake of progress in the country?
    Has a baby ever walked or talked at 2 months?
    Development has a process. We must begin from somewhere.

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  3. “When the head is big, it cannot avoid punches.” Zambian Proverb

    “There are those lovely buzz words again: “good governance”, “transparency” and “accountability”. The ones that politicians love to throw around in an effort to convince people that they are committed to those principles. … In the end, the lack of transparency leads to a lack of accountability and ultimately to a lack of good governance. Everyone suffers. The population is kept in the dark and the politicians eventually feel the resentment of the electorate at the next general election, if not before.” Observer Editorial July 31, 2014.

    The Vendor at Da Market Say: “Pay Attention!”

    On June 17, a mere three days after The PM was sworn in, this mere voice, recognizing the dissonance that was sure to come, wrote that GoAB should initiate Strategic Imperatives & Tactical Actions immediately and have:
    “Management of all Statutory & Government Entities provide you within a month. the following: A zero based budget; a 5% reduced & 10% reduced budgets for a calendar year commencing June 13th 2014 to June 12th 2015 with two caveats that there be no reductions in Human Resources save for natural attrition, that there be no reductions in Services and that the preparation of these budgets involve all staff, stakeholders and other Publics;
    That you engage external Auditors to provide a full accounting of the Financial Well being of Statutory & Government Entities.
    Any Entity that is not in a sound position should find itself being The Case Study of a Forensic Auditor.
    That as soon as the above reports are presented to GoAB, the Findings and Recommendations be shared with the Public.”

    In so doing they would have paved the way for other necessary investigations either by internal or external auditors, prepared not all of the sore losers but their supporters, would have caught the jesters, slackers and frauds, masquerading as Black Bureaucratic Elites. For Example, They would have quietly nullified the noises from the Grande Dame. How Much was The Good Lady paying herself Paid for Construction & Project Management of which she knew nothing, just as another Dame lacking in such capacity was being paid to Project Manage the Facility on St. Mary’s Street?

    Don’t Cry Now for Antigua & Barbuda given that the Former GoAB did not release the Lindquist Report!

    Such actions may be foreign to the Rock, but for those Senior, Seasoned & Experienced Administrators who have experienced Changing of the Guard in the Public and Private Sector they know that there is nothing new here. One commenter, fnpsr exhorts “Let’s Fix The Little Things First with RWE Before We Fix The Big Things!”

    PERSERVERANCE – In the confrontation between the Sea and the Rock, the Atlantic & Caribbean Sea always win – not through strength, but by perseverance.

    Even Red Ants Should March Armed!

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  4. Too bad there are as many ALP as UPP involved in tbe Stanford Antigua Bank fraud. I guess we’ll never see that FSRC Report.

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  5. My suggestion to all is to pray. Pray that God will have mercy on us in this little island of ours because only he has our best interests at heart. A man’s words are as dry as pot works dam is right now. Only God’s promises have truth, not man’s. So let us take our focus off of man and put on Jesus. Complaining and cursing each other will not get us anywhere good. Let us leave the politicians to God for judgment is his to give not ours.

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    • Out of all the bloggers here, you seem to be the one that cracks me up all the time. Sad to say, is not pray alone i want you to pray, i want you to fast for a month as well. But i can guarantee your biased …. that had it been UPP investigating ABLP, you would be creaming your pants.

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      • 1. I don’t care about what you want
        2. I can guarantee that you are a POT
        3. If it was the other way around, the ALP administration would be as you put it, creaming their pants and;
        4. Get a life and get Jesus

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        • Sad to say…the amount a lies me done see you spout pan dis site ya, you shouldn’t be even mentioning Jesus name inna ya mouth.

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  6. and investigate the fencing too, such a shame when one goes to exercise at YASCO there is not a single restroom ready to use,that is a serious crime to know that more than half a million was spent there.They must pay for those crimes,the ABLP should also be investigated any day they demit office and the cycle of accountability and transparency should be active all the time …i dont care which colour is in govt.

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  7. Before all these investigations take place which will require a pretty penny to pay for them all I hope that the government will have measures put in place to pay civil servants their gratuities, pensions and salaries on time.

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  8. PROTECTING THE PUBLIC’S INTEREST! This investigation will be meticulous; and necessary for the Reformation of the Government. Mr. PM the nation needs, among other things a Political Culture Change, but not a culture Shock. It will be a juggling experience for everyone, you are going to need Your strong base behind you (ABLP diehards the nucleus of Your power and Ballance, Artist worthy Chief of Staff who is able to navigate through the maze of Informing the citizens and dampens the stress levels as they develop on the local front. I myself am not a praying man, but have not forgotten how to, and positive prayers you’re going to need, You have to be Blessed to be where you are; just to paraphrase President Obama a little with ” yes we can”. Now that phase (1) is in the bag, your light must shine like a *

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  9. Investigating the previous administration? Was this a campaign promise? If so can someone direct me to the section in the manifesto that speaks to it. I recall no income tax – not a word since 12/6. Improved water conditions – it got worse. Payment to Barbuda workers – still waiting in vain. 500 houses in 500 days – no lands available. Please note that your decision to investigate will only find favour with the 2000 die hard supporters. The other22000 voters made up mainly of foreigners and others fooled by your promises just don’t care. So if you must, have fun. But remember, we voted you in, we can vote you out.

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  10. my way of helping August 3, 2014 at 15:51 - Reply

    The New York embassy definitely need to be investigated. The arrogance of that lady needs to be dealt with. I think it should be standard for investigation to be on the previous government, when a new one is appointed.

    The other thing, there are too many things that seem to be wrong right off the surface, using a reasonable man logic. IHI, the road cost, Housing and public works, the police department, customs, port authority, and agriculture and pest control and disease.

    These are the areas i believe needs to be investigated, not just for financial crimes but for criminal and civil failure to act, reckless endangerment, everything

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  11. Let us toss some smelly red herring in the public’s nose so that they can ignore the real issues…bringing in some investment still waiting, solving crime, it got worse…sitting and hoping

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    • Wada, bringing the investments still waiting? I thought you guys were saying they should slow down? Some were saying he should not sign off on Yida. Mek up you all mind, is it too fast or too slow?

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      • The YIDA investment nah good so we still waiting on proper investments if there will ever be any.

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        • Sad to say, there have been at-least two other MOA’s signed other than YIDA. Strangely you claim its no good yet the former government drafted a MOU with them. They later let it sit since according to BS, claims they needed to focus on getting reelected, while young people sought work, and the process took probably a year. One thing you can be sure of ABLP, we not about laziness. Here’s some signings in case you forgot (Sad to say Teck Dat in yo’ Nen-Nen):

          1. Government signs MOU with two companies in St Kitts – http://www.antiguaobserver.com/government-signs-mou-with-two-companies-in-st-kitts/
          2.UAE investor signs agreement for million-dollar hotel project in Antigua – http://jamaica-gleaner.com/extra/article.php?id=3846
          3. 120 million luxury resort project on Morris Bay loopjamaica.com/2014/07/22/news-investor-signs-agreement-for-120-million-hotel-project-in-antigua/

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          • Sad to say... August 7, 2014 at 15:12 -

            Who cares if there are two other signings? The point is, are they good. It’s quite obvious that the ALP administration is more about ignorance and tricks, that’s one thing.

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  12. In principle I have no issue with investigating if there is something wrong. My request can you try to reign in some of the crime that is currently taking place affecting ALL citizens. Clearly the ABLP is witch hunting again, but that is who we voted for so thats what we get.

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    • Wada you know of the UPP having witches? Can you please identify them so we can quickly warp this up?

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        • Wada, only someone who believes in things like witches would think that investigations which were demanded years ago, and now being done are witch hunts. The PM about a year ago asked the former PM (then PM) to conduct an investigation into most of these matters and he refused to do. These demands for an investigation also came from known UPP supporters eg. Mr. Ryan, Serpent etc. It’s only logical that now elected they would carry out what they deemed needed. Now Wada, if we do find someone with a broom we won’t made the mistake of seeing them as a witch

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  13. Time to Rebuild? August 3, 2014 at 02:44 - Reply

    I can’t help but wonder, if it’s time to rebuild where are we gong with this line of action now? I am not opposed to the ‘witch hunt’ but let’s be honest, at this time that money could be rightfully used to push along projects along. But, in the end, is all friend and company they be. Holding these public spectacles to keep the ignorant masses entertained. But then clever plot, the chicken watching a hawk misses the snake stealing her eggs.

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  14. Sometimes I wonder about us as Antiguans its like because of your political color only then you want an investigation. I don’t care what color you are, if you do the crime yes investigate them and if found guilty they must do the time. Time enough for us to hold these politicians accountable for our monies they are spending.

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    • A matter of time August 3, 2014 at 07:24 - Reply

      The ABLP is fortunate that no investigations and charges were brought to the courts about their MANY improprieties with regards to the money for the people and citizens of Antigua and Barbuda. Now the red devils trying to reenact what they managed to do to George Walters, jail him then throw out the case after nominations were made so that he couldn’t run against them again. Lest we forget,,, Another ploy by the ABLP.. Up to old tricks again…..

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  15. One of the most “crooked places in the world” is Antigua and Barbuda.Those are the words of a Mafiosi Vincent Teresa.From his book My life in the Mafia.He was at the time speaking about the crooked politicians in Antigua and Barbuda.In my opinion much has not change since that book was written.

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    • Redonda you do realize that experts have found holes in much of what (Vincent Teressa) suggested? He stated that mercury loaded dice was being used at a casino (Mamora Beach Hotel Casino). Experts point out this is not possible (see The Mafia Encyclopedia By Carl Sifakis). He also made a false claim about Pappa Doc, each night, getting 10% of the bets made in the casino’s in Haiti. Experts have shown that’s not possible. A jury in the US actually found Mob boss Meyer Lanksy not guilty after testimony from the questionable character you enjoy quoting. The man is a known liar. Stop spitting on your country, there is hard work to do. All willing and able bodied needed

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  16. Will there be an investigation into the IHI matter? You cannot investigate the UPP without investigating yourselves.How can a mongoose investigate if there are any eggs in the chicken coop.By the way how much is your annual salary.I am living in the United States and all public figures salaries are there for all to see.Even the President of the United States salary is public.In Antigua and Barbuda it is private.Tell me why.Don’t you people work for the public and are paid from public funds.There are too many political crooks in Antigua and Barbuda.Do not investigate to try and let us feel you are a different party.You are still the same investigating to cover up your tracks.Do not try and fool us.

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    • them nah find nothing thts why they couldnt file charges for wrong doings…….10years and they found nothind

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    • Redonda the salaries and enumerations for persons in government office (including the elected and selected politicians) can be found in the estimates which are released yearly. These estimates can be fond on the governments website. Do you wish for us to also have an investigation into European slavery?

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  17. Finally. Was hoping this would have happened from day one. Lets have proper investigations which can stand up to scrutiny. Lets also act on the findings, no matter who.

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    • Amen…do not forget to investigate Cricket World Cup and IHI and the Airport Runway (tons of trucks for gravel, water etc.)

      Lots of us made money through UPP as red people too.

      Thief no lub see thief with long bags!

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  18. Fled Proud Antiguan FIRST and UPP supporter August 2, 2014 at 14:49 - Reply

    Let me thank the ABLP for proving to the people of this country that they are true to their colors.
    The UPP also thank them for proving that, we as a governing administration operated above board and is not prepared to file over 40 injunctions to stop the IHI investigators for getting hold of records and files that would prove that they misappropriate million to their own personal bank accounts.
    There are question as they always will be in any administration but does it rise to the level of corruption as the ABLP is claiming? We will all see.
    We have nothing to hide, we are not running, we are proud of our accomplishment and we stand tall behind our successes.
    While you are so concern about corruption please investigate the CaribArena Tapes, the Barbuda Sand Scandal the APUA Funding, the IHI scandal, please continue these investigation, since you’re about transparency we await the results of all those matters. I wanted to know under our administration and since government is continuous I am awaiting those out come as well remember transparency and accountability are your watch words.
    PM, remember you indicated that they wanted for you to say the WPP engines were not new and you were prepared to call their names if they push you, well sir you’re the PM now, who was pushing you to say the engines are not new?
    Just out of curiosity who Mr. PM wanted you to say the engines were old? Please Investigate remember you’re the Administration in Government it’s your right so to do we can’t wait for you to tell us.
    I can assure that we in the UPP are satisfied that our tenure in office was remarkable and that we have done the greater good for the greater number and not for the privileged few.
    We stand ready to assist you in any matter of national interest and assure you that we are an open book that is the reason all the government files were there when you got in office. That is transparent government for you.
    Legitimate investigation not witch hunts

    Proud Antiguan Proud UPP Member

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    • Hey angel , when we finish with our investigations plenty of them going to jail like there forefather george walter.

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  19. This is good news for our people, and we want justice not an investigation to shelve the report but for those who committed any wrong doings against the state, have their day in court,. I thought for a minute that it would be business as usual- (politicians protecting politicians). Now there are those that will say what about IHI etc., and I do believe some corruption was done, however ABLP will not hold investigation into their own that was what UPP did and did not follow through, so lets start somewhere….now maybe those who are currently in office will know the same thing will happen if and when they leave office. By the way I think there are too many ministers in the government.

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  20. The operations of the office in NY? I’ve always felt that Max the Curse was envious of Dr. Ash because he accomplished what he never could in all the years he (Max) ‘served. BTW, Ash was appointed under the Lester Bird administration. Who will take over the office? Dr. Rae? Dr. Newton? SMDH

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  21. @jb. The best form of defence is attack, hence the guilty try to turn the table on their opponent by ignoring their own nefarious past and maybe present too, for all we know. These people have cojones of cast iron and barefacedness to go with it. Did they mention The Lindquist Report soon to be released? Oh yes, they will; what about the unethical purchase of Crown Lands by our dear leader who no doubt cast his vote in favour of the handsome discounts granted to government ministers at the time. There is no such thing as integrity in Antigua and Barbuda politics -shame! The new Prime Minister has so far proved himself to be nothing more than a convoluted flip flopper from day one of taking office but he does have a lot of time to redeem himself. Investigate, yes, but don’t pick and choose, investigate the LOT, ALL misdemeanours from both sides of the aisle, then and only then can the people of this country really believe you are not covering your rear end as a tactical diversion; not all of us can be swayed by a chicken leg and/or a bottle of beer. Please bear that in mind!

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  22. ANOTHER EXAMPLE TO SHOW THAT THE CLOWNS COME TO PLAY. AND NOT TO HELP MOVE THE PEOPLE ALONG. THE PEOPLE WERE CAUGHT, NOT THINKING, WHICH IS BRINGING ANTIGUA IN THE WORLD SPOTLIGHT OF IGNORANCE AND IRRATIONALITY…TO PUT IT BLUNTLY; EMPTY DRUMS MAKE THE MOST NOISE…THEY’RE A BUNCH OF MISFITS PARADING AROUND AS OFFICIALDOM. THE BIGGEST LOSERS IN THE WHOLE EPISODE, ARE THE LITTLE MAN, WHO INCIDENTALLY WORKED THE HARDEST AND HAVE THE HIGHEST EXPECTATIONS. BUT THEN AGAIN, THEY’RE NOT INDEPENDENT THINKERS. IT’S ALL ABOUT THEMSELVES AND NOT COUNTRY…POOR ANTIGUA. MY BELOVED ANTIGUA IS IN THE HANDS OF THE GOOD LOOKING MAFIA. THEY CAN’T DO OTHERWISE SINCE THEY JUST DON’T KNOW HOW.

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    • Step back and re-read your comment and you will realize how ridiculous you sound. On a side note, mind pressure, it kills.

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  23. and while you at it Mr Hurst don’t forget to investigate the IHI matter, the MBS matter, the gun to south Africa, public work under ALP, Rolls-Royce, Guishard, the tapes on Caribarena let us know if they were fabricated and I list the others later going to get something to eat and hit you back. Be careful the lord have you on you second life be careful the lord na love ugly all jokes aside

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  24. THE ABLP’s AIM IS TO ELIMINATE ALL OPPOSITION.

    ANTIGUA IS ON A DOWNWARD SPIRAL.

    I NEVER TRUSTED A POLITICIAN NOR A LAWYER …….

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  25. The plot…..
    The hunt……
    The chase……
    The surrender……
    Cutie could have company at 1735, They can form their own Shadow Government, since all of the accusations, innuendoes, and the likes were all done, in a shadowy manner, Marshall will join them in due time, and of course, he’s in charge of National Security, in the Shadow Gov’t Cabinet.

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  26. Kwame Nkosi Romeo August 2, 2014 at 09:25 - Reply

    Is an investigation necessary? This age-old tactics is not based on rooting out the systemic problems, but used to deflect attention of their own sin. No one doubts the merit of investigations, however there is selectivity in this instance, meanwhile, other polarized issues are overlooked. Pay attention to the following:

    -Aldo Pinto leased more than 500 acres of Barbuda land in 1989 for a period of 99 years

    -CCI Group Inc. paid US$4,048,695 to Impresa Gufftani Constructioni Edili SRL for leasehold rights to 90 acres (Odious Land Deals – The CCI Group and Foreign Direct Inequity – Part II Saturday 25 January 2014- CARIBARENA)

    -300 acres of Crown Land given to Bruce Rappaport

    -The extension of APC & WIOC contracts

    -Corbkinnons Project and 350 acres of Crown Land

    -The thousand of acres of Crown Land given-away to foreign developers and speculators

    -Political complicity with Enerserve handing over the Desalination Plant at Crabbes to foreign operators, instead of the Antigua Government as planned in 1999

    -A businessman handing over ‘envelope of happiness’ containing US$7.4 million to a Member of Parliament (Corporate Monopoly- ALP Government Complicity Sunday 1 June 2014 CARIBARENA)

    -The issue surrounding the ownership of Barrymore Hotel, Marina Bay Condos, Pillar Rock etc.

    These economic divergence are absolutely pellucid, but, the failures lies with the UPP turning a blind eye to ALPs indiscretion. Today, the table has turned, a new leader, but not necessarily a new culture, unless the above mentioned is reviewed, then Birdocracy politics survives and thrives. Hopefully, a true revolutionary government will in the future address the above mentioned problems, eventually taxing the estate of the perpetrators!

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  27. It has been only 50 days since GB and the ABLP took office and some questionable appointments signing of MOU’S and MOA’s have thus far taken place. The old guard of the ABLP is very vindictive and vengeful. They are going to make sure that many of the UPP Parliamentarians can not run for office again. There are going to be many more George Walters. Just let sleeping dogs lie and do just what you promise the people of Antigua and Barbuda. Jobs, jobs, jobs and a better future.

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  28. starting looking about the people of this country, before you start doing investigations, promises were made and we are yet to see action.

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    • Everything is a process and will obviously take time. Is you same ppl complaining bout he moving to fast signing investment deals. Chupit U Chupit?

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  29. Before all the politricking that will only be a waste of time as usual we need to know if the police officer that was involved in a robbery has recovered, is now out of hospital and has been charged.

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  30. This will further divide our people,

    Red jurors. Blue jurors.

    Law is politics and politics is law.

    Red lawyers. Blue lawyers. Frighten judges. Red judges. Blue Policemen. Bad minded government.

    Chaos in Wadadli if you ask me.

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  31. @carvaa. The difference between an ABLP supporter and yourself is this: Let the investigations begin and let them be TRANSPARENT so that we know that evidence is not being fabricated. Then let the findings be public so that we the people can see for ourselves that due process was indeed followed. I would accept the judgement no matter what it is. There.

    We had the IHI and other matters where clearly, some of those who presently hold power were indentified. For ABLP supporters that has not even raise concerns in their minds but now they are happy for the ‘good’ news. Don’t you see a kind of weirdness there?

    Another thing. These investigations will no doubt reveal a lot of ABLP supporters who like Chameleons change accordingly in order to remain on the gravy train.

    Be careful what you wish for!!

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    • The UPP Administration had an obligation and a responsibility to prosecute any worngdoings that was done during the previous administration. They chose not to. Instead, we had lots of “leaked” recordings. Any attorney, including the former AG knew that if such evidence existed then a warrant should have been executed and ALL EVIDENCE should have been confiscated in order to build a proper and strong case. It is their incompetence and greed why they chose not to proceed. In a court of law, the tapes are inadmissible as they were never secured with a warrant. While there were wrongdoings during the former ALP Admin, the people of A & B should realize that the UPP Admin failed them by failing to perform their duty to the nation in failing to properly investigate and prosecute such matters.

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      • Yes they should have ensured certain people get charged for crimes they committed but they were not obligated to do it. They were obligated to have the country’s best interest at heart not to run behind people. It appears to me that this so called new administration is side tracking people with investigating the former administration so that people won’t see that they are not doing what that they are obligated to do as a government. They are quick to fire stones at the former administration but the Bible says ‘Let he who have not sinned cast the first stone’.

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  32. Nothing of note has been done but first line of business is to ‘witch hunt’. I am sure that the people did not vote ABLP into power to do this but to improve their lives.

    The poor voters. All that they have done was to vote in a set of vindictive and spiteful people who know nothing else than to disrupt the society.

    It also appears that PM Browne has lost ABLP to the same old freeloaders whose actions then continue to evoke some bitter and lasting feelings. They are it again!!!

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  33. Good.
    Let there be a Malfeasance in Public Office Enquiry every time there is a change in Government and immediate prosecutions as required.
    Maybe we will get more accountable and truthful representatives!

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  34. Now you understand how politics work. Unless as a government or past government you were squeaky clean to the public and the world the hype of bringing one to justice and even prison in Wadadli in this century is far from becoming reality. Attorney General Benjamin past is being question, so why not look into a few of the UPP affairs while in office and see what we come up with. Politic plus politician equal politricks. Spencer knew Bird and Asot wasn’t going anywhere, but see a way to manipulate our minds and got two terms in office. Names will be call and people will be identify on both sides and even beyond if one of these big names go down, it’s like the mob and that’s why is all a waste of time and money. Messing with your minds politics and the people who worship it.

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  35. I believe there were some wrongdoings in the WPP purchase. Antigua and Barbuda deserve an investigation. We should not allow these politicians to waste our hard earned taxes buying junks that are essential to life.

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