Thursday, May 30, 2013

The Divisiveness In The UWP Camp?

Surely, you'll agree that the "teeway maytay" taking place on social media with support for King or Chastanet to become political leader of the UWP has reached escalating proportions. Is it healthy? Why should it not be. Arguments based on humility, spendthriftness, newcomer etc, keep being the focus of these arguments.
King or Chastanet. That's what is making the rounds these days. Information reaching this blog speaks to a gross dislike for Chastanet within the UWP hierachy. It is alleged that the feeling is that Chastanet just came in and already he wants to be the top man. Hmmm! Ring a bell? A trustworthy source told this blog that it was UWP at work to make sure that Chastanet never won in Soufriere at the last general elections. Surprised? It is alleged the Tucker and Fredo were the chief culprits to make sure Chastanet lost. Also the former UWP candidate played a major role to make Chastanet's loss a reality.
The question is why? Your guess is as good as this blog's own.
King, on the other hand seems to be the more favoured within the heirachy. Is it because of his humbleness, don't carish attitude, his soft approach and what have you? It is a fact that King was not in total control of his cabinet the way Kenny seemingly has his. What justification can you give to Fredo boastfully going around and saying that he gets what he wants from King. No harm in saying this, but what image does it protray of King.
The ill-advised comments about King by the past chairman opened a box of worms. Similarly, Fredo's stint to the press against Chastanet just goes to show the unrestained nature of the man.
UWP's demise at the last general election was due to the division amongst them. Tucker was doing his own thing, Likewise Fredo, Mondesir, Chastanet and the list goes on. Can you imagine that these guys had all this money and they still lost?
Whether Chastanet can pull off the leadership and put UWP on a strong footing remains to be seen. King on the other hand, if elected, will he now put his foot down to send the message that he is boss? Either way it goes, much healing will be needed.
Who holds the edge now, King or Chastanet? There is definitely an aggressive campaign taking place in the Chastanet's camp. Apart from those social media comments in favour of King, not much seem to be happening.
Taking into consideration the constituencies, Soufriere, Laborie, Vieux Fort, Babonneau, Gros Islet and Choiseul to an extent, barring Tucker's influence seem to favour Chastanet.
But the democracy is good. However leaving the leadership of the party in the hans of a few selected individuals, who have little knowledge of politics is a sinful crime for lack of a better word.
July 28 is D-Day. May good sense prevail.

Wednesday, May 29, 2013


Saturday, May 25, 2013

Investigating Team Lands Recommendations To Central Government


RECOMMENDATIONS
 This is a report of the Recommendations which the team of investigators came up with.


"RECOMMENDATIONS

25 Choiseul Village Council
25.1 Council Records
We recommend that Clerk of Council, Williana St. Rose and Former Parliamentary Representative, Rufus Bousquet, be made to account for the documents.
25.2 Procurement at Council
It is recommended that appropriate disciplinary action be taken against Clerk of Council and Former Parliamentary Representative be made to account for the documents.
25.3 Payments Not Accounted For
It is our recommendation that Clerk of Council and Former Parliamentary Representative, Rufus Bousquet, be made to account fully and timely for the payments made from the said bank account.
25.4 Easter Economic Stimulus Package
It is recommended that this matter be handed over to the Police for further investigation. Further, it is recommended that the Credit Union, be made to explain the circumstances which lead them to processing withdrawals from the account, with only the signature of the Clerk of Council on withdrawal slip.
25.5 Value for Money – Works Projects
We recommend that the authorized officers in the circumstances (Clerk of Council and Chairman of Council) be made to account fully and timely for these significant differences.
Page 187 of 190
 25.6 Alleged Misappropriation of Moroccan Funds 
We recommend that an investigation be conducted to determine the use of the Moroccan Funds. 
PRIVATE AND CONFIDENTIAL 
25.7 Failure to Account for Foreign Currency
We recommend that the Former Parliamentary Representative be made to give a full explanation about the origin of these foreign cheques and timing of related credits in the bank account."

Thursday, May 23, 2013

Review of Choiseul Village Council Holds Former Rep and Village Clerk Accountable - Part 4


This part deals with the Moroccan Funds that was slated for the construction of the Mini Stadium
".Page 158 of 190
PRIVATE AND CONFIDENTIAL
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. 
ii. Alleged Misappropriation of Moroccan Funds
The  Choiseul Village Council received via wire transfer on the 5th October 2010, from the
Morocco government the sum of Eight Hundred and Six Thousand, Three Hundred and Seventy
Eight Dollars and Thirty Eight Cents ($806,378.38) for the purpose of constructing a mini stadium
at La Fargue. These monies were deposited in BOSL Account No.901215802, the same account
in which funds from the Taiwanese Government was deposited.
According to records at the Council and further confirmation by Clerk of Council, a total amount
of forty-four thousand seven hundred and fifty dollars ($44,750.00) has already been spent for
topographic survey, architectural, civil and structural engineering fees. Consequently, there should
be a balance of Seven Hundred and Sixty-one Thousand, Six Hundred and Twenty-eight Dollars
and Thirty-eight Cents ($761,628.38) of Moroccan Funds on the bank account.
It was duly noted that the balance on the said bank account as at 31st December 2011 was only
five hundred and fifty-nine thousand, four hundred and ninety-six dollars and four cents
($559,496.04). If the balance is only Moroccan funds there is a difference of two hundred and two
thousand one hundred and thirty-two dollars and thirty-four cents ($202,132.34).
This shows that an amount of two hundred and two thousand one hundred and thirty-two dollars
and thirty-four cents ($202,132.34) was spent from the Morocco funds for purposes other than
“Construction of the Mini Stadium at La Fargue”.
This discrepancy will affect the future implementation of the project as funds will have to come
from other sources to enable successful implementation. 
iii. Failure to Account for Foreign Currency Grants
Regulation 48 of the Financial Regulations – Section 54, Finance (Administration) Act, Revised
Laws of St. Lucia, 2005 stipulates the following:
Whenever an officer or a person other than the Accountant General, a subaccountant or a collector of revenue receives public money he or she shall as
soon as possible pay it to the Accountant General or a sub-accountant or a
collector of revenue and obtain a receipt for it.
Page 159 of 190
PRIVATE AND CONFIDENTIAL
According to records at the Council and confirmed by Clerk-of-Council, Council received the
following amounts from Former Parliamentary Representative, Rufus Bousquet, in the form of
foreign-currency cheques during 2011:


Date                             Name of Drawer                                  Cheque No.                            Amount
20/01/2011           United Nations                                       1036292                           $US 10,000.00
                             Federal  Credit Union
 11/02/2011         United Nations                                        1037086                          $US 10,000.00
                            Federal  Credit Union
19/04/2011          United Nations                                        1039359                            $US 7,500.00
                            Federal  Credit Union
14/06/2011         Consulate General of                          Credit Transfer (18978)           $US 28,000.00
                           the Republic of Kosovo
                            in New York
Total                                                                                                                              $US 55,500.00
When we interviewed Clerk of Council on that matter, she explained that all the foreign currency
cheques  were  received and  deposited in the  BOSL  bank  account  (# 901215802)  by Former
Parliamentary Representative and Former Minister of External Affairs, Rufus Bousquet. She was
only informed of receipt of the funds by the Former Parliamentary Representative and that the
Former Parliamentary Representative never revealed the source of the funds to her.
However, examination of electronic copies of relevant deposit slips submitted by BOSL revealed
that US cheques 1036292, 1037086, 1039359  and 18978 were deposited by Clerk of Council,
Williana St Rose and not Former Parliamentary Representative and Former Minister of External
Affairs, Rufus Bousquet.
We examined relevant bank statements to ensure that these funds were indeed deposited in the said
bank account. We were able to trace all the foreign currency cheque deposits in the bank account
except cheque no.18978 dated 28/06/2011 for $US28,000.00. However, we noticed a credit was
made to the account in the form of a “credit advice” on 12/09/2011. The “credit advice” was in the
amount of $75,219.60, $50.00 (bank charges) below the Eastern Caribbean Dollar equivalent of
$US28,000.00. We note that proceeds of the said cheque was credited to the Council’s bank
account, seventy-three (73) days after the foreign currency cheque  was reported to have been
received. 
Page 160 of 190
PRIVATE AND CONFIDENTIAL
These foreign currency cheques were never paid into the Accountant General as required by the
Financial Regulations and all the amounts mentioned above were fully disbursed as part of total
disbursements made from the bank account of the Council for the period. In addition, the source
of the funds as it pertains to the cheques from the United Nations Federal Credit Union is still
remains unknown.
The above is a clear violation of Financial Regulations 48 and poises serious questions about the
integrity of source of funds." 

Check for the Recommendations on Saturday.
Editor's note: Pics of Morocco's Foreign Minister and building of the United Nations Federal Credit Union are not part of the review.

Wednesday, May 22, 2013

Dedan Sets To Clear His Name

    Under "Easter Stimulus Package" in the Review on Choiseul Village Council as reported in yesterday's post a section reads:

"...........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
(repealed).
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)"

Dedan is furious about this and promises to go the full length to clear his name. Dedan has made his position quite clear. 
It appears that some deliberate misinformation and mischief have been the forte of the investigators as regards to the paragraph about Griffith Jn Baptiste/Dedan Jn Baptiste in their Review. So claims Dedan.
1. The investigators claim that there is no record of him being a Councilor at the Council during the month of April. A calculated lie. He had been a member of Council from  February 1, 2009 until December 2011 when the Governor general terminated  the services of all Councilors..
2: They claim that Griffith Jn Baptiste was the supervisor of the Easter Beautification Program: Another orchestrated lie. He,on no account, was ever offered a job to supervise the said program. As to where this information came from is a mystery to him.  dedan says, "Show me the records which states that, if they can. Did that info come from the Clerk or Chairperson?" 
3:  Dedan went on to say, "That I received a cheque for $28,000.00 as a contractor is true. However, I was instructed by the former Rep to cash the cheque and hand the amount over to him. Details of this I will withhold for now until, if necessary:"
4.  As to Griffith Jn Baptiste and Dedan Jn Baptiste being one and the same person is a fact. I have always known myself as Griffith Jn Baptiste. i have alwaays called myself Dedan since I noticed it as part of my name on my birth certificate. When the present administration upgraded their system in 1998 my name no longer appeared on my pay slip as Griffith Jn Baptiste but rather Dedan Christiani Griffith Jn Baptiste. Therefore my name could be read as Dedan C G Jn Baptise," Dedan stated emphatically, Dedan reiterated that to imply a fraudulent act on his part is again looking for a needle in a haystack.
    Jn Baptiste continued, "I am in no way surprised that the investigators, ably assisted by operatives of the Choiseul SLP Branch, I presume, would go at length to find something on me.
But like I've always said you can't find shit. Cause I know that I was never part of any illegal activity  or corruption during my one year stint as Secretary at the Constituency Office during  2007 - 2008.:
Stand by that. My family's name and mine I dared to protect at all times.

Filmed at 11.


Tuesday, May 21, 2013

Review of the Choiseul Village Council holds the former Rep and Village Clerk accountable - Part 3


 "Choiseul on the move" continues to bring you this report unedited.

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.
Page 156 of 190
PRIVATE AND CONFIDENTIAL
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
(repealed).
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
Page 157 of 190
PRIVATE AND CONFIDENTIAL
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
Compoyettee Road
Road Rehab  – Lower  Enthia St Brice                $3,405.00                      $15,050.00            $15,050.00           
Delcer
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
Mongouge West
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
Total
                                                                     
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.
Page 158 of 190
PRIVATE AND CONFIDENTIAL
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.  

Sunday, May 19, 2013

Review of Choiseul village Council holds Former Rep and Village Clerk accountable - Part 2


 We continue to  bring to you that damning report on the  Council

"v. Procurement at council
Under Regulation 11 (1) of the Procurement and Stores Regulations  – Section 54, Finance
(Administration) Act, Chapter 15.01, Revised Laws of St. Lucia, 2005 the Minister for Finance
appointed a Central Tenders Board to evaluate tenders for procurement of goods and services and
sale of public goods.
Further, under Regulation 16 (1) of the Procurement and Stores Regulations, the Director of
Finance appointed a Departmental Tenders Board to perform the functions of the Central Tenders
Board in cases where “the value of goods and services does not exceed $100,000.00.
Further still, Regulation 26 (1) of the Procurement and Stores Regulations – Section 54, Finance
(Administration) Act, Chapter 15.01, Revised Laws of St. Lucia, 2005 stipulated the following:
Works or services not exceeding $20,000 in value, or such greater amount as
the Director of Finance and Planning determines, may be authorized by works
orders signed by any officer authorized to do so by the accounting officer,
without the execution of a written contract.
Page 154 of 190
PRIVATE AND CONFIDENTIAL
It is noted that at the time of the Review the Director of Finance had raised the amount to
$40,000.00.
We requested from Clerk of Council contracts, works orders and payment certificates in relation
to works projects that were paid from the Council’s bank account for the period under review.
Clerk of Council indicated that she was only in possession of a few works orders. She indicated
that all  contracts,  works orders and payment certificates were issued from the Office of
Parliamentary Representative.
We examined the few works orders and payment certificates that were made available by Clerk of
Council. It was observed that within the Office of Parliamentary Representative there was a Works
Division which managed all contracts, work orders and payment certificates and Parliamentary
Representative, Rufus Bousquet acted as Quantity Surveyor and Authorising Officer on all the
contracts, works orders and payment certificates (see Exhibits 59, 60 and 61).
Further, it was noticed that Former Parliamentary Representative, Rufus Bousquet, sent a request
to Clerk of Council, Williana St. Rose, to pay Sylvester Regis the sum of $20,820.00 for purported
repairs to the Fiette Road. The request from the Parliamentary Representative  was dated 26
November, 2011, a non-working day and two (2) days before the General Elections of 2011.
However, the cheque (BOSL no.000334) that was prepared and issued to Sylvester Regis was
dated 25 November 2011
   This makes it clear that Clerk of Council backdated the cheque to give the impression that payment
was issued on the last working day before the General Elections of 28
we also noted that the said cheque was only presented to the Bank on 12
It must be noted also that Sylvester Regis received the biggest share of works contracts. He
received contracts to the value of $402,330.00.
The above is a clear example of a circumstance where a Clerk of Council allowed herself to be
used by a Parliamentary Representative for the purpose of manipulating the procurement process
in the Constituency (see Exhibit 159)
vi. Payments Not Accounted For
Under Section 2 – Definitions, Finance (Administration) Act, Chapter 15.01, Revised Laws of St.
Lucia, 2005 an “accountable officer” and a “public officer” are described respectively as follows:
“a public officer or accounting officer concerned in or responsible for the
collection, receipts, custody, issues or payment of public monies, stores,
Page 155 of 190
PRIVATE AND CONFIDENTIAL
stamps, investments, securities, or negotiable instruments, whether the
property of the Government or on deposit with or entrusted to the Government
or to any public officer in his or her official capacity either alone or jointly
with any other public officer or any other person”
“a person holding or acting in any public office”
There were hundreds of  payments made by the Council for works projects but the only
documentation available for verification were documents in connection with payments made from
funds derived from Central Government subventions. Documentation in connection with payments
made from funds derived from Taiwanese grants was not available at the Council’s office for
verification.
Clerk of Council (Mrs St.Rose) indicated that documentation in connection with payments made
from funds derived from Taiwanese grants was managed by the Office of Parliamentary
Representative. According to the Clerk of Council, when payments were to be made, the Former
District Representative would send her the various work orders and contracts for payments, she
would then write the cheques and return all documents and the cheques to the District
Representatives office.
As a consequence, we were unable to ascertain whether payments made from the bank account of
Council for works projects were made to the correct suppliers and in the correct amounts."

Look out for Part 3 on Tuesday

Friday, May 17, 2013

Review on Choiseul Village Council holds Former Rep and Village Clerk Accountable - Part 1

The "Review of the Financial Position of the Town, Village and Rural Councils" around the Island has been made a public document. The report has raised many eyebrows about the operations of those councils which were graced with the Taiwanese Funds.
The Choiseul report looks at the operations of the Council, the use of the Taiwanese funds, the Easter Beautification Project, the  disbursement of funds for projects and the Moroccan funds as well as other foreign donations given to the former Rep. Quite a damning report. Recommendations are provided at the end of the report.
This post will confine itself with the Review of the Financial Position of Choiseul Village Council. Due to the length of the report "Choiseul On The Move"  will post the Review in  four parts so as to give its readers time to digest it. The report is thus:

"CHOISEUL VILLAGE COUNCIL"
"The Choiseul Village Council was established pursuant to the provisions of the Local Authorities
Ordinance Chapter 239, Revised Laws of St. Lucia, 1957 (repealed).
Section 6 (1) of the Local Authorities Ordinance, Chapter 239, Revised Laws of St. Lucia, 1957
(repealed) stipulates the following:
“The Governor in Council may declare any area in the Colony to be an urban,
village or rural district for the purposes of this Ordinance and may define the
boundaries of such district and also of any district created by this Ordinance
and may alter, restrict, or enlarge the same”. 
As mentioned elsewhere in the report, in keeping with Section 6 (1) of the Ordinance (reference
page 67) the following communities fell within the boundaries of the Choiseul Village Council:
a. La Pointe, Delcer, Industry, Franciou, Jacobie, Ravineau, Bois D’inde, Esperance West,
Fiette West, Myers Bridge, Derriere Morne West, Anse L’ Ivrogne, Deville Estate;
b. Anse John, Fiette East, Portalese, Mongouge, Morne Sion, Libereaux, Martin, Ponyon,
New Field, Victoria, Esperance East, Derriere Morne East;
c. Le Riche, Savanne George, Choiseul Village, Reunion, La Fargue;
d. Belle Vue, Morne Jacques, Des Randeaux, Dacretin, Manana, Victoria, Mailly;
e. Motete, Mondesir, Roblot, Dupre, La Maze, River Doree, Debreuil, Monzie;
f. Sauzay, Cafeiere, Capognotte, Dugard, Dacretin;
g. La Perle, Londonderry, Gertrine, Giraud, Beausoliel, Beausejour;
h. Mont Lezard, Parc Estate, Saltibus, Daban, Gaya Bois, Warwick, Grande  Magazin,
Belvedere East;
i. Piaye, Balembouche, Balca, Bongale.
The Review revealed some very significant findings in relation to the Choiseul Village Council.
Details of these findings are outlined below.
Page 151 of 190
PRIVATE AND CONFIDENTIAL
GENERAL FINDINGS
i. Account Opened Without Proper Approval
We noticed that Council opened and operated an account (A/C no. 090669) at the Choiseul
Cooperative Credit Union from April 2009. There is no evidence to show that Council received
the approval of the Accountant General to open and operated the account at the Credit Union.
It was observed that Council used that account to deposit funds ($100,000.00) given by Central
Government under the Easter Economic Stimulus Programme in April 2009. It must be noted that
the Accountant General had opened a bank account at Bank of St. Lucia for the Choiseul Village
Council in February 2008, for the purposes of depositing funds received from Central Government.
Despite the existence of the BOSL account, Council chose to open the said account at the Credit
Union, in which was deposited the $100,000.00 (see Exhibit 56).
ii. Bank Account into Overdraft
Regulation 114 of the Financial Regulations – Section 54, Finance (Administration) Act, Revised
Laws of St. Lucia, 2005 states as follows:
“No accounting officer may overdraw a bank account operated by him or her.”
It was duly noted that the Bank of St. Lucia account went into overdraft on the 23rd of May 2008
up until the 13th May 2009 to the tune of $765.00. In fact Council, Ministry of Local Government
and Accountant General’s Department were not even aware that the bank account went into
overdraft, simply because they were not monitoring and doing the necessary bank reconciliations.
This is a serious violation of the Financial Regulations and the respective parties must ensure that
the situation does not repeat itself.  
iii. Collections Not Paid-in on Time
Regulation 129 of the Financial Regulations – Section 54, Finance (Administration) Act, Revised
Laws of St. Lucia, 2005 stipulates the following:
(1)  Any cash held in excess of daily requirements shall be lodged in a commercial bank;
(2) Where banking facilities are not available, any cash held in excess of daily requirement
shall be secured in a strong room or safe.”
Page 152 of 190
PRIVATE AND CONFIDENTIAL
We noticed that Council did not pay monies collected to the Sub Accountant for
Soufriere/Choiseul on a daily basis because the Sub Accountant visited Choiseul only twice per
week, Tuesdays and Fridays.
Therefore we enquired of the Clerk of Council as to the mechanism used to keep monies collected
safe when the Sub Accountant has not visited. The Clerk of Council indicated monies collected on
the days the Sub Accountant is absent are paid into her credit union account and would be
withdrawn on days that the sub-collector would be in office.
This practice is totally unacceptable as it opens collections of the Council to significant risk of
embezzlement. Further, the Council faces risk of loss if Clerk of Council was to depart the Council
before these monies are withdrawn from her credit union account.
If there is real need for Council to have an account at the Credit Union for the purpose of securing
monies in the absence of the Sub Accountant, Council should make a request to the Accountant
General’s Department through the Ministry of the Local Government.
iv. Council Records
According to the Job Description of Clerks of Town/Village Council, one of the duties/tasks of the
Clerk is to ensure that the records of all transactions are properly secured and kept and shall make
all such documents available for inspection by authorized persons. He/she shall keep all other
records as may be required by Council or the Ministry. Financial Regulation 156 (reference page
27) also places these responsibilities on Clerk of Council
On the 6th March, 2012, used cheque books were requested from the Clerk. Clerk indicated that
she did not have all the cheque books because they were in the possession of the Former District
Representative, Rufus Bousquet.
She indicated and we quote: “He came with someone who appeared to be from the Taiwanese
Embassy and he indicated that he needed the cashbook and cheque books to reconcile his accounts”
(see Exhibit 57).
Rufus Bousquet took possession of ten (10) cheque books in the month of February 2012, at a time
he was no longer the Parliamentary Representative for the Choiseul-Saltibus Constituency. In fact,
he had no authority to be in possession of these books. The Clerk requested the cheque books from
him and a week later, they were received. We cannot confirm whether he did make alterations to
the cheque books.
After  the incident, we requested from  the  Clerk of Council other documents in relation to
procurement of construction services to substantiate the several enormous disbursements that were
Page 153 of 190
PRIVATE AND CONFIDENTIAL
made from the bank account of Council. We were once more directed to the Former Parliamentary
Representative, Rufus Bousquet. However, several requests to Mr Bousquet by the Council (Clerk)
and the Ministry of Local Government to release the necessary documents proved futile (see
Exhibit 58).
Further, we made inquiries at the Office of the new Parliamentary Representative, Lorne
Theophilus, to establish whether Former Parliamentary Representative, Rufus Bousquet handed
over any documents in relation to the procurement of constructions services for the Constituency
of Choiseul. The Office of the new Parliamentary Representative, Lorne Theophilus has confirmed
that Former Parliamentary Representative, Rufus Bousquet did not hand over any documents
whatsoever when he demitted office.
We are of the view that this practice by Former Parliamentary Representative, Rufus Bousquet is
a fundamental breach of Sections 30 and 33 of the Constitution of St. Lucia. Whereas the location
and the individual in the Office of Parliamentary Representative may change from time to time,
the constitutional office of Parliamentary Representative for the Choiseul Constituency is a going concern and will remain a going-concern.
Consequently all documentation in relation to completed or on-going projects and initiatives for
the Constituency of Choiseul has to be passed from the former holder-of-office to current holderof-
office.  Further, it was irresponsible of Clerk of Council, Williana St Rose to have given
possession of these documents to the Former Parliamentary Representative."
 
Look out for Part 2 on Sunday.

Tuesday, May 14, 2013

CHASTANET: "BRING BACK SIR JOHN'S VISION."

    Allen Chastanet, on Thursday May 9, 2013, met with a cross-section of the constituents from  Choiseul/Saltibus, at Jacks Disco in Delcer. The meeting took place at about 6:30pm and was chaired by political activist Jimmy Haynes. Jimmy introduced Chastanet to the constituents, while at the same time posing some questions  which he thinks should be the main focus of Chastanet's delivery - reasons why Chastanet wants to be political leader, and what will he do if he becomes political leader and wins the next general elections, to take St Lucia out of these "Bitter "Days."
     Jimmy went on to inform Chastanet that Delcer's pollling division is better known as "Niche Flambeau." He went on to inform the potential political leader that many of the delegates are here. Each constituency provides at least 15 delegates who have the voting right at a convention to elect a political leader of the party as well as other members of the National Executive.
    A thunderous applause shook the disco as Chastanet took to the podium. Chastanet started the meeting in an unconventional manner by first asking the audience to pose questions they wish to have answers for. "What are your plans for the youth and investment for Choiseul?",a member of a youth group asked. Why have you decided to run for political leader of the UWP? " was another from a person on the floor .Two or three more questions were thrown at Chastanet from other persons.
     Chastanet, looking very energized and motivated began by giving a history of his political life. He moved on to mention that, " We must bring back Sir John's Vision." He continued, " I believe that the United Workers Party need to bring back all the people it has lost. All the old people, people who believed in Sir John, and believe in the Vision of Sir John, who did not either vote for this party, and in some cases voted against the Party. United Workers Party lost the elections. The Labour Party did not win it. it is our people that put us out of power, not the Labour Party." (Applause).
     As to why he chose to put his hat in the ring for the political leader, he went on to answer, " And why me? My whole life has been about delivery. Every business I have been involved in has been successful.......people  say, as a leader all I know about is tourism. that's not true. I'm an economist. I chose to educate myself in tourism, because I think Tourism is what is going to drive the economic growth of this country."
    Chastanet, meticulously delved into each industry and how he would like to see the way forward. He touched on Tourism, his pet topic, Agriculture and how he would like to see the farmers do a lot better. On Sports, he would like to see games whereby our young  can get access to scholarships to further their education. On Education/Youth, Chastanet would like to see a change. "We need a better education system for our youth. I am not happy with their education. I don't think that the school system is equipping and teaching the young people enough things to make them more productive in our society. I don't believe that we are teaching young people how to own their own business, because many of you will not be working for somebody else except your own business, and you're not going to have a chance to go to university, and therefore at school you've to learn to manage money, how to negotiate contracts,and how a business works. so education is fundamental to me first thing."
    About the Party, Allen thinks that there must be unity, and thinks that our greatest enemy is ourselves.
When asked about choosing Choiseul as his seat, Allen was very diplomatic in his answers. Though in his reply one could sense that his heart seems all Soufriere, he was quick to mention that it is the Party who decides where he will run. Other persons have it that Micoud South is a seat reserved for him.
With his leadership, Chastanet thinks that he can make the United Workers Party a formidable opposition. He told his audience, " We do not have an opposition. The party in power feels they can do whatever they want to do. Time to send a message to the Labour Party. Let us get the United Workers Party together and let us become a formidable opposition....................we are too divided. It's time to reunite. I believe that I am the person to bring  all these people  back together. And the people who do not want to be part of this team, you're out."
  Chastanet took a swipe at the SLP government. He concluded, " I am tired of this government making excuses as to why St Lucia is not doing well. The first thing they always say is that the world is in a recession.  Things are bad, we can't make things happen. That's not true. America is booming, Canada is booming,United Kingdom has had growth, Europe is now having growth.............."
  The Labour Party Chastanet thinks, cannot run the country. "It does not know what to do. they are confused, and they are less united than we are. Trust me what I've said. ...................Let us put the right leadership in place and let us get down with the business we have to do.
 About the United Workers Party, he thinks that the Party needs to change its ways. It must become a more disciplined party. he went on to tell his audience, "We have to become a party that has a bigger vision for where we want to take this country. We are a party that must become more structured, and a party when it is in power is committed to delivering to everybody....."
 At the end of the session Allen Chastanet met with the delegates that were present and later mingled with the  large crowd that had gathered outside to meet him.


Tuesday, May 07, 2013

What game is afoot with CUWPCB?

The more things change, the more they seem to remain the same. One will recall this blog's cry when a Bousquet's Puppet executive of the Choiseul/Saltibus Constituency Branch was formed. Coupled with external pressure by De Party a new exec was formed recently,
This blog quickly gave the new exec its blessings, but it seems it mus have been ill-timed. This blog went on to shower kudos on the vice chairman whom we thought,with his vast political knowledge and rapport with the people. Is an ideal choice. But it seemsthis blog had it all wrong.
We hear of division within De Party prior to the upcoming Convention, but it seems to be taking shape in the Choiseul/Saltibus Constituency as well. There is a feeling in the air that something secretive is brewing withing the exec with regard to the election/selection of delegates for the Convention. It is alleged that the list of degateshave already been selected, yet the nmes are withheld from supporters of the party. Why? It is also alleged that the largest polling division does not have a representative delegate, as well as other polling divisions. The rule for selecting/electing delegates to a Convention is clearly stated in the constitution. Is there a move afoot to highjack the delegates' vote at the upcoming Convention? Is the past Rep influencing the decision-making process of the exec?
Recently a top supporter wrote to the chairman of the branch, asking him for the names of the recently selected/elected delegates. What youare about to read is an unbelieveable response fro the chairman. It reads,
"......I regret that I can't send  you the list(delegates) as promised .
I called the vice chairman (Brian Charles) and discussed the matter
with him . He advised that I shouldn't ................
 
Regards
 
Willan"

Can you believe this? Why isn't the list of delegates a public document for supporters of the party? Are these delegates surrogates of the past Rep who by all accounts seem to have this exec in his back pocket and also seem to have an agenda for the Convention? This will not work as we the supporters of the party are bent on getting answers as to what is brewing behind these closed doors.
This blog has been reliably informed that a group of suporters of the party within the Choiseul Constituency, are organizing two meetings - one with Chastnet and the other with King, to present their plans to the Constituents. Bravo! This blog welcomes this move as it will give the Constituents a chance to quizz both potential party leader.
The meeting with Chastnet this blog has been informed is slated for this coming Thursday in the largest polling division- Delcer. The meeting with King is slated for a latter date.
Democracy at work?
The CUWPCB are furious at that move taken by the supporters, since they think that they should be the one to coordinate such a venture.
Jimmy Haynes who heads the committtee to get both potential leaders to meet with the constituents of the constituency had this replay to the chairman's letter. ".........I appreciate your effort in attempting to get me the names of the delegates. Do not worry as your failure to do so is testimony to the fact that your Executive does not represent the majority of us UWP supporters in Choiseul/Saltibus. While I will not prolong this message by elaborating on that glaring weakness rest assured that we will succeed.Nevertheless, I will take this opportunity to wish you the best. I understand the duress under which you presently function. I will find out the names of the delegates and I will succeed in inviting them to this very important meeting of the UWP.
I cannot be blamed for your committee's  lack of  the foresight to take the initiative. I cannot be blamed for the evident division that presently exists between we the UWP supporters of Choiseul/Saltibus. Good luck in your endeavours. I am comfortable knowing that you will remain a supporter of the UWP. But I will continue to strive to bring the interest of the majority to the fore and resist the selfish motives of the minority.

Respectfully yours,


Jimmy J Haynes "

It will be interesting to see how things develop over the days.


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Saturday, May 04, 2013

THRONE SPEECH 2013 | Government of Saint Lucia

For our readers who would like to get hold of the year's throne speech. Click on the link below.
http://stlucia.gov.lc/resource/throne-speech-2013

Look out for our next post " Chastanet or King. Our choice to make."
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