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vii. Easter Economic Stimulus Package
We noticed that Central Government issued an amount of $100,000.00 to Council under the Easter
Economic Stimulus Programme, April 2009. Council deposited the funds into an account that was
opened at the Choiseul Cooperative Credit Union without the approval of the Accountant General.
According to the “Application for Deposit Account” form, there were three signatories to the
account and these were as follows:
Elmira Joseph - Chairperson of Council
Williana St Rose - Clerk of Council
Henson Samuel - Member of Council
In addition, it is longstanding practice and the policy of the Ministry of Local Government, that
two signatories were needed on all disbursement vouchers/cheques, with Clerk of Council being
the compulsory signatory.
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An examination of relevant disbursement vouchers submitted by the Credit Union revealed that
only the signature of Clerk of Council appeared on the disbursement vouchers which the Credit
Union used as its authority to debit the account.
Further, there were two amounts totalling $6,000.00 (2,883.78 + 3,116.22) that were disbursed
from the account and transferred to another account at the Credit Union (A/C # 890) on 15
2009. We saw no authorisation from Council for these debits to the account.
In addition, according to documentation from Council all the funds were disbursed for works and
activities in connection with “Choiseul Beautification Programme” and the Supervisor for all
works under the Programme was Griffith Jn Baptiste. There was no evidence that Griffith Jn
Baptiste was a member or employee of Council. Investigations revealed that Griffith Jn Baptiste
was a member of the UWP Choiseul Constituency Group. Further, there is no evidence that
Council sanctioned the works contracts that were issued to the various contractors under the
Programme neither did Chairperson of Council countersigned the payment request as required by
the Section 30 of the Local Authorities Ordinance, Chapter 239, Revised Laws of St. Lucia, 1957
Further still, the documentation revealed that one of the contractors under the Programme was
Dedan Jn Baptiste. In fact the documentation revealed that works for that contractor was
supervised and certified by Griffith Jn Baptiste and the said Contractor was paid an amount
$28,000.00. Investigations revealed that Contractor, Dedan Jn Baptiste and Supervisor, Griffith Jn
Baptiste was one and the same person (Griffith Dedan Christiani Jn Baptiste – N.I no. 122008)
(see Exhibit 63).
TAIWANESE, MOROCCAN AN OTHER FUNDS
i. Value for Money – Procurement
a. Works Project
As alluded to elsewhere in this report, accounting officers or officers duly authorised to sign or
authorise payment instruments have a most important responsibility to ensure accuracy of every
detail in the said payment instrument before the payment instrument is approved, under the
provisions of Financial Regulation 72 (refer to page 53).
With the assistance of a qualified quantity surveyor from the Ministry of Physical Development,
Housing and Urban Renewal, we conducted a physical examination and cost estimation exercise
on works projects executed in the Constituency by Council for the period under review. The
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exercise revealed some significant differences between “estimated cost” and “amount paid”
pointing to wastage and possible fraud and embezzlement.
The instances of significant difference are outlined in the table below:
Project Name Name of Contractor Estimated Cost Amount Paid Difference
Concrete Section of Constance Charles Could not locate $22,263.00 $22,263.00
Road Rehab – Lower Enthia St Brice $3,405.00 $15,050.00 $15,050.00
Community Road &
Bridge at Delcer Jimmy Haynes $15,564.00 $32,000.00 $16,436.00
Kerb & Slipper Drain – Smith Peter Could not locate $12,400.00 $12,400.00
Footpath at Da Bans/La Maze Peter Phillip $8,446.00 $23,300.00 $14,854.00
Concrete Road at Dierre Morne Sylvester Regis $40,490.76 $55,000.00 $14,509.44
Drains and Culverts at Ravineau Sylvester Regis Could not locate $38,320.00 $38,320.00
Retaining Wall and Drain
at Sauzay Valeria Herman Could not locate $35,000.00 $35,000.00
Infrastructural Works on
Jetrine Playing Field Wally St Juste $36,443.00 $45,000.00 $8.557.00
Drain & Slips at La Perle Wally St.Juste $6,461.00 $39,000.00 $32,539.00
Road Rehab – Gravel Enthia Brice $3,405.00 $15,050.00 $11,645.00
b. Conflict of Interest – Bryan Charles
We noticed that Council issued a number of contracts to Bryan Charles during the time he served
as the Deputy Chairman of the Council. We can confirm that he was paid a total amount of
$33,008.03 during the period.
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This is a violation of the principle, that Members of Council should not use their power and
influence on Councils to further their personal interest.