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Premier Smith ignores Opposition Leader’s call for CDB loan breakdown

Premier and Minister of Finance Dr The Honourable D. Orlando Smith (AL), left, has not responded to the call by Opposition Leader Honourable Andrew A. Fahie (R1), right to name the members of the Independent Recovery Agency Board and outline the plans for the spending and monitoring of the $65 million Caribbean Development Bank (CDB) loan. Photo: Andrew ‘Shadow’ Dawson/VINO
Even before the permission to borrow was received in the House of Assembly, the Caribbean Development Bank (CDB) had announced the approval of a $65 million loan in December 2017 to aid in the recovery of the territory following the August 2017 floods and the September 2017 hurricanes. Photo: finance.gd
Even before the permission to borrow was received in the House of Assembly, the Caribbean Development Bank (CDB) had announced the approval of a $65 million loan in December 2017 to aid in the recovery of the territory following the August 2017 floods and the September 2017 hurricanes. Photo: finance.gd
ROAD TOWN, Tortola, VI- Premier and Minister of Finance Dr The Honourable D. Orlando Smith (AL) has ignored the call by Opposition Leader and Representative for the First District, Honourable Andrew A. Fahie, to name the members of the Independent Recovery Agency Board and outline the plans for the spending and monitoring of the $65 million Caribbean Development Bank (CDB) loan.

The call was made while the Chairman of the Virgin Islands Party was delivering his Annual District Report on Sunday January 21, 2018 at Capoon’s Bay. Hon Fahie had said, “I am calling on the Minister of Finance and I demand that within seven days he give a detailed breakdown of how the $65 million loan from CDB will be spent! How it will be monitored! And give us the names of each of the members on the Board who will be charged with monitoring the Fund.”

Silence from Dr Smith

A week has since passed and there has been no word from the Minister of Finance regarding the request of Hon Fahie.

In an invited comment on January 28, 2018 Honourable Fahie told our news room, “Let me make it abundantly clear that the information being sought from the Minister of Finance is on behalf of the people of the Virgin Islands. After all they are the ones who will be called upon to repay the $65 million loan from CDB. This loan repayment will stretch from the present generation into future generations.”

You would recall that the CDB announced the approval of a $65 million loan in December 2017 to aid in the recovery of the territory following the August 2017 floods and the September 2017 hurricanes.

The National Democratic Party (NDP) Government has always been criticised for its lack of transparency and accountability in handling the territory’s finances. This Hon Fahie says has to change adding that, “The journey ahead calls for business as usual to be discontinued and accountability and transparency to be the order of the day.”

What now?

As the rest of the territory awaits the requested information, many are wondering what happens now. To this Hon Fahie said, “In this light, we await the detailed explanation to be given to the people as requested of the Minister of Finance as it pertains to the loan funds in question. Failure to do so will only open the door for further actions to be taken in the near future in the pursuit of providing the information for the public.”

To that end the Opposition Leader concluded by saying, “Of course we all know that as usual the government will try to throw some kind of smoke screen to shift the focus off of their not being accountable for the loan funds in question but they will soon find out that those are washed out games that will last shorter than butter will last against the sun. The new day of accountability, transparency and good governance is dawning and they must face this new morning.”

20 Responses to “Premier Smith ignores Opposition Leader’s call for CDB loan breakdown”

  • Schups (29/01/2018, 09:34) Like (5) Dislike (37) Reply
    Fahie go hold a seat.
    • To Schups (29/01/2018, 11:12) Like (22) Dislike (2) Reply
      Fahie will hold his seat because he is the only elected official who proved to the BVI people that he is not just about talk but can lead especially in the time of crisis and devastation like during and after Hirricane Irma. He is the voice for the many voiceless. Keep an eye on that money.
  • just asking...... (29/01/2018, 10:01) Like (28) Dislike (0) Reply
    Why would they listen to Andrew if they not listening to the people?
    • Not2Sure (30/01/2018, 10:49) Like (0) Dislike (0) Reply
      Like so many here, I am sickened and outraged at this Government's attacks on our democratic institutions, and the growing evidence of their abuse of power as they has attempted to manipulate the Loan funds for their own purposes, both personal and political.
  • Agree (29/01/2018, 11:16) Like (15) Dislike (0) Reply
    We the people have to pay back this $65 million loan so we have the right to have been told even before they got the loan on how & where every penny will be spent.
  • ZZZZ (29/01/2018, 11:18) Like (13) Dislike (0) Reply
    Mr. Zzzz can't tell us where our $7 million went for this so called plane deal so I don't expect him to tell us where the $65 million will be spent because he's busy zzzzzing.
  • My Take (29/01/2018, 11:21) Like (15) Dislike (0) Reply
    The Premier should have told we the people this information long ago if he was accountable but if he hasn't balanced the country check book for 5 yrs now then we can't expect better from him now.
  • RoadTownRebel2018 (29/01/2018, 11:47) Like (28) Dislike (0) Reply
    This is very Bad Governance and lack of Fiscal Responsibility and Accountability.
  • NezRez (29/01/2018, 12:57) Like (10) Dislike (0) Reply
    This is not the Government’s personal checking account, and we the people should have known long time where the money was coming from and how it would be spent. We the people should know where and when the projects are scheduled to take place. We the people have to pay back this loan through taxes and need to be kept abreast of what’s really going on and not made to feel as though we don’t matter, because we do. As far as any political person here goes, I don’t listen to any of them because they are all the same. What we need to see is real accountability of the money being spent and actually see the projects being done. So tired of the finger pointing which is getting us nowhere.
    • To NezRez (29/01/2018, 13:20) Like (1) Dislike (2) Reply
      You made so many good points but you are confused. Who else will ensure accountability on behalf of we the people other than the very elected persons we elected to do just that which is what Fahie is doing so how could this be finger pointing? I am glad Fahie is there working on we the people's behalf or we wouldn't know the half of what happens to our hard earn tax dollars.
      • NezRez (29/01/2018, 18:54) Like (2) Dislike (1) Reply
        @ To NezRez, yes Fahie is bringing out very important issues, but I am NOT confused nor did I forget why they were replaced. I remember years ago Fahie along with the rest of VIP was controlling everyone’s life and if you weren’t for them, they said you were against them and wielded there power to the point people felt hopeless. They controlled the money and lived lavishly while we the people suffered greatly, and this is why I stated I don’t trust any of them. So now as you said, any party in power will control the money so where are we heading? Until I see a BIG change in any of the ruling parties, we will just sink lower and lower into the abyss. I feel they are all out to line their pockets with as much gold as they can in their lifetime.
  • just asking.... (29/01/2018, 14:45) Like (6) Dislike (0) Reply
    where is the new governor? he in bed with them already?
  • wize up (29/01/2018, 16:42) Like (0) Dislike (0) Reply
    all about the money(or what)....there will be enough if and when U become HNIC!!!
  • Diplomat (29/01/2018, 19:10) Like (3) Dislike (1) Reply
    It is no surprise that Dr. Hon Premier D. Orlando Smith, AtL, ignored Hon Fahie, D-1 and Leader of Opposition, for at this juncture there is no consequence for doing so. The Hon Fahie was probably sowing seeds for future outcomes.
  • --------------------------- (29/01/2018, 20:06) Like (0) Dislike (0) Reply
    My goodness! Dr has not a clue on how it will ne spent
  • faxy (30/01/2018, 10:23) Like (0) Dislike (0) Reply
    This is how democracy slowly dies, when the ruling party thinks they are accountable to no one!
  • ccc (30/01/2018, 10:35) Like (0) Dislike (1) Reply
    The systematic destruction of our values, rule of law, and our BVI goes not just unchecked, but aided and abetted by the NDP
  • Cassandra (31/01/2018, 14:04) Like (1) Dislike (0) Reply
    Hahahaha...Fahie thought he had more power than he does. Did he get an answer yet or is he openly being ignored because Zzzzz isn’t afraid of him? It’s time to Rumble...hahahaha.


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