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‘I have nothing further to add’- 'Gus' on his claims that VI was ‘full of corruption’

-Ex-Governor Augustus J.U. Jaspert refuses opportunity to set record straight
Although the Commission of Inquiry (CoI) granted him another opportunity to set the record straight on damming claims that he allegedly said during a Cabinet meeting in January 2020 that the VI was ‘full of corruption”, Ex-Governor Augustus J.U Jaspert aka ‘Gus’ refused the offer. Photo: VINO/File
While testifying to the CoI on Hearing Day 52, on 21st October 2021 Premier and Minister for Finance Hon. Andrew A. Fahie (R1) alleged that the former governor made the statements during a Cabinet meeting on January 9, 2020. Photo: VINO/File
While testifying to the CoI on Hearing Day 52, on 21st October 2021 Premier and Minister for Finance Hon. Andrew A. Fahie (R1) alleged that the former governor made the statements during a Cabinet meeting on January 9, 2020. Photo: VINO/File
WICKHAM'S CAY II, Tortola, VI – Although the Commission of Inquiry (CoI) granted him another opportunity to set the record straight on damming claims that he allegedly said during a Cabinet meeting in January 2020 that the VI was ‘full of corruption”, Ex-Governor Augustus J.U Jaspert aka ‘Gus’ refused the offer.

“Having reviewed the further correspondence relating to the above meeting, I have nothing further to add to my points as recorded in the transcripts from page 20 of my appearance to the Commission,” the Ex-governor said through a response note to the Commissioner Sir Gary Hickinbottom. 

On page 20 of the hearing of Day 52, the discussion was on the audit of the cost overrun at the Tortola Pier Park, however, on the pages that followed, the discussions moved on to correspondence between the Premier and the Governor, including complaints the Premier made to the UK over the alleged conduct of the Governor. 

The November 17, 2021 note was read by Attorney Bilal Rawat on November 24, 2021, for the record because Jaspert was not called to respond to the criticisms by the Premier.

“The letter I sent to the Premier of the Cabinet’s minutes at the time records the position factually,” he added.

Wide brush

While testifying to the CoI on Hearing Day 52, on 21st October 2021 Premier and Minister for Finance Hon. Andrew A. Fahie (R1) alleged that the former governor made the statements during a Cabinet meeting on January 9, 2020.

Attorney Mr Rawat quoted the Premier, who stated that Jaspert said, “the BVI is full of corruption, amongst others and that was something which the premier in this letter utterly rejects and he says that he and his colleagues want to express their individual and collective disgust at your conduct in this instance: that it is unacceptable that you should insult them in this way and cast aspersions on their character.”

At that time, Mr Rawat told Jaspert that the Premier described his behaviour to be a pattern that was not in standing with the principles of good governance and the modern partnership that the UK and VI shared, however, the ex-Governor said the assertions were incorrect. 

“What’s alleged is effective, your behaviour in that Cabinet meeting and your behaviour towards the current elected members of the government that formed the Cabinet, was disrespectful and insulting…and you tag them all with the tag of corruption,” Mr. Rawat said pointedly. 


25 Responses to “‘I have nothing further to add’- 'Gus' on his claims that VI was ‘full of corruption’”

  • Sam (26/11/2021, 11:12) Like (18) Dislike (4) Reply
    ask him were all the dope goes also ask him into whose pockets does the cash end up

    just a question not an aligation
    long live great british

    • Refusal to add anything to nothing - leaves nothing (26/11/2021, 11:50) Like (25) Dislike (12) Reply
      So Gus alleged that senior politicians were engaged in drug running but could not provide a single detail or instance of such behaviour - when given the opportunity to provide some details, Gus declines.
      A decent and honest man would have accepted that he had no evidence of any corruption, any dishonesty or any drug running, and would withdraw the allegations. Is Gus a decent man? Let's see!
      • Because (26/11/2021, 15:41) Like (7) Dislike (29) Reply
        He does not have to provide any details on what and who we know. Their necks is already in the noose. Outsiders already know that the BVI is a corrupt place. That is a stigma that the BVI will always carry until the problem is corrected. Just imagine going away on a business meeting and people in the meeting is saying the BVI IS FULL OF CORRUPTION.
        • Really ??? (30/11/2021, 07:57) Like (0) Dislike (0) Reply
          So is the UK and the rest of many nations!!! What you people cant stand is we quietly defend our rights and dont allow you to come here and feel you are better than us because of ur skin color or what big country your from.

          Most of you who are angry always talk about getting work permit exemption or citizenship or buying a house or land here. If this little bird sanctuary is so bad why dont u just leave and let us and the genuine ones stay and make our lives.

          Some of you never thought you could live such a life in ur own countries and now u come hear to judge us? Please!!!!!
    • smdh (26/11/2021, 14:04) Like (9) Dislike (20) Reply
      The Governor did not claim that the VI Was full of corruption. It was the current Premier that made those claims. Repeatedly. The Governor appointed the COI at the request of the Premier to investigate these claims.
  • trrefdrfds (26/11/2021, 11:14) Like (10) Dislike (1) Reply
    look at the Postal gun threats issue which was never resolved to this day!

    If the shoe was on the other foot I would have been behind prison walls all now.
    need I say more.

  • My girl (26/11/2021, 11:17) Like (2) Dislike (29) Reply

    Gus was a r***t he is bad news

  • Concern citizen (26/11/2021, 11:32) Like (0) Dislike (0) Reply
    He said "was" hmm
  • um (26/11/2021, 13:34) Like (5) Dislike (5) Reply
    Seeing as none of us have seen the letter that was sent to the Premier of the cabinet minutes, you all have no idea what lies or truths the Premier and ministers said in the Cabinet Meetings, BUT if any of the other points raised in the COI are true about mis spending and dodgy choices and the fact that the Governor sees all this in the Cabinet meetings - but we don't hear or see it then the Governor Gus was correct. They were probably lying to his face and everyone knew that big fat ones were being told.
  • E. Leonard (26/11/2021, 14:11) Like (5) Dislike (2) Reply
    I’m not privy to any information that former Governor Augustus J. U. Jaspert may have communicated to the Sir Gary R. Hickinbottom led commission of inquiry(COI) in private. It seemed to be a public COI, so anything that would not harm national security should be divulged in the open. Yet the governor declined to expand and provide details and specifics on the alleged explosive corruption charges. Any charge of corruption should be based on concrete facts, for a corruption(s) charge or even an allegation of corruption charge has adverse impact on the territory, VI residents, territory’s image domestically, as well as internationally. True, corruption is a cancer on and in any country, but charges of corruption are serious and must be based facts and cannot and should not be taken lightly or worse made maliciously.

    Moreover, allegedly, in January 2020 during a cabinet meeting, former governor Augustus JU Jaspert supposedly stated that the VI (British) was full of corruption. Presumably, on his way out the door, he commissioned a COI to investigate the issue. Surely, the decision to commission the COI must have been driven by concrete and indisputable facts. As such, the former guv should jump at any and all opportunities to provide specific details to support the alleged claims. Yet he punted when given the opportunity before the COI. Did the question catch him flatfooted? If so that is /surprising, for he commissioned the COI. Guess we will wait for the COI report.

    Hope that Sir Gary R. Hickinbottom COI is fair and balance and that the outcome is not a foregone conclusion. It is not fair but real that people tend to protect their own. For example, though the evidence was clear that the Kenneth Bates Hill Wickham Cay and Anegada development project was a lose-lose, one-sided, exploitive etc agreement, the Sir Derek Garraway COI sided with Kenneth Bates Hill. The UK government had to intervene and hit pause, resulting in the deal being canned. The UK loaned the VI government the $5.6M to buy out Ken Bates’ interest.

    Nonetheless, regardless of the reason for commissioning the COI, it is clear that some government functions are in need of restructuring and reform. This is an opportunity for some governmental creative destruction. The restructuring, structural adjustments, and reform wheels should already be turning. Create destruction does not mean corruption; it is part of the normal governing/administering process. Every organization, function should undergo periodic creative destruction.
    • fair and balance (26/11/2021, 18:06) Like (2) Dislike (0) Reply
      @E. Leonard, a fair and balance summation. By the way, what is creative destruction?
    • Quiet Rebel (28/11/2021, 00:50) Like (1) Dislike (1) Reply
      Racial hierarchy, racial disparities and system racism are a UK toxin that didn’t vanish it just flourishes in more subtle ways. It is stealth in its pervading its supremacy, privilege and entitlement. Its stealthiness traps some Uncle Thoms in its web, turning them against their own while they collaborate. It is an old, tired truck employed during slavery, colonialism and now neocolonialism. Be vigilante for the duplicity and the cannibalism it breeds.
  • Cagey (26/11/2021, 16:58) Like (4) Dislike (1) Reply
    @E. Leonard, a cagey, read between lines, fence sitting, studious and careful and relatively informed fellow. But what does the Sir Derek Garraway COI of the Wickham Cay and Anegada project has to do with the current Sir Gary Hickinbottom COI. To me, they are disconnected other than being commissioned by the UK? Just asking a question. To be fair, you laid the lumber on both sides.
  • Pointless (26/11/2021, 17:06) Like (17) Dislike (19) Reply
    The truth is that Jaspert came with good intentions and was treated like scum for doing what others had failed to do. Yes he wasnt perfect but this is the guy who called out a lot of wrong doing, but most importantly led this country through the immediate Irmamath when no one else would. How sad that we can’t recognise the value of a public servant with integrity. How ungrateful we are. How sad we vilify them and call them racist when it is we who are that. Shame on those with their hate speeches. Shame on those who call the UK an enemy. Shame on those who offend British Citizens by claiming they support slavery in this day and age. In other countries people go to jail for inciting racial hatred. Here our public officials think it is fine to do that. How far we have fallen. How backward we have become. How intolerant we are. How ashamed of ourselves we should be.
    • stupps (27/11/2021, 09:33) Like (0) Dislike (1) Reply
      Good what intentions. Who investigate what he did for four years. Who held him accountable? All under his responsibility was not handled for that period Police, prison etc.
  • Horray (26/11/2021, 19:49) Like (0) Dislike (3) Reply

    The ra****t is gone.

  • please (26/11/2021, 20:38) Like (6) Dislike (8) Reply
    Do not believe anything Gus says. He's a pathological liar.
  • Dancing in the sunshine (26/11/2021, 21:26) Like (5) Dislike (8) Reply
    The Commission of Inquiry should be considered null and void because the three lawyers who were representing the COI were performing their duties illegally in the Territory. The Attorney General said that they should have been admitted to the BVI Bar before they commenced their duties. After the Hon. Speaker took the matter to the court to question their legality to practice law in whatever form, Sir Gary Hickenbottom advised they should be admitted to the local Bar. We are living in modern times where information is easily available via the Internet, we cannot fool the people.

    For those persons who are naïve and are in denial about slavery and the atrocities that the Planters did to the African slaves, I am totally disappointed with their remarks and they are not wrong. I would blame it on their parents who were unable to teach them about slavery. We had a slave master here in the Territory whose name was Author Hodge. He killed so many slaves and he was eventually executed for killing one of his slaves who ate a mango that fell from a tree. (Concise history of the Virgin Islands By Vernon Pickering)
  • Norris Turnbull (26/11/2021, 22:33) Like (0) Dislike (0) Reply
    UK Gus
  • Ne Timeas (27/11/2021, 02:10) Like (3) Dislike (5) Reply
    Former Governor Augustus James Ulysses Jaspert appointed by Her Majesty Queen Elizabeth II as her Governor to the Virgin Islands, not Governor of the Virgin Islands. The VI-UK relationship is awkward; the VI is supposed to be self governing; it is not. Since 1672, the relationship has been like a master-servant relationship. The UK’s position is that people of the colonies were not its equal and they had to be treated as subordinates. And that attitude still persist. For example, it will tell the VI who will be governor, not give the people of the VI the opportunity have a say in whom will be its governor, not governor to. The Governor to the VI represents the interest of the Crown, not the interest of the VI people. Virgin Islanders are not in the pool of candidates who cannot be appointed to Governor of the VI. Virgin Islanders are not part of that UK circle. The UK does allow a token Deputy Governor; it allows Deputy Governor’s to serve as place holders for a few days while the Governor is away. Deputy Governors are worthy to serve as Deputy Governor but not good enough to serve as governor. Has any Deputy Governor been appointed a Governor anywhere. There is no upward mobility for Deputy Governors; they are stucked. For example, the late Elton Georges served as Deputy Governor forever. Was it that he was not qualified to serve as Governor or Deputy Governor was his lot.

    Some Governors come to the VI with a superior attitude, seeing the local government and the VI people not as equal partners but playing a subordinate role as always been their role and status. This is consistent with the Colonialism structure; the colonies were/are the help. Former Governor Augustus JU Jaspert spent three plus years in the BVI. Internal security, including the RVIPF, fell under his purview. Supposedly, the view, an assumption, was made that the BVI was corrupt. I remember a big drug in the BVI and someone(s) contact a UK newspaper declaring that the BVI was corrupt. But no such claimed when similar drug busts occurred in the UK. Silence, silence, silence! In any event after three years and as he exited the door, he used his dictatorial power to commission a commission of inquiry(COI). Was the COI legit ( well it is legal);or it was something else. COI indeed should be commissioned to investigate wrong doing but this one is suspect. This is just my rant. What do you think?
  • wow (27/11/2021, 07:09) Like (3) Dislike (1) Reply
    It's the present Premier asked for this when he was Leader of the Opposition. Now all hell breaking loose with misinformation and bad leadership.
  • Hmmmm (27/11/2021, 09:50) Like (1) Dislike (4) Reply
    Gus not lying, he know what he is talking about and a lot of people know it but acting like it's not true
  • Political Observer (PO) (27/11/2021, 19:12) Like (3) Dislike (0) Reply
    He who stole and wore the gold makes the golden rule. The supposed UK-BVI partnership is lopsided, reflecting the historical Colonial masters and subservient Colonies relationship. The Premier Andrew A. Fahie led government is responsible and accountable to both the BVI people, as well as to the UK(Governor); whereas, former governor August J U Jaspert is not accountable to the BVI people (in fact he was disrespectful to the BVI people, ie, the reparation and local landmark naming issue) and accountable to the FCO. Nevertheless, FCO is a one-sided arbiter. FCO seemed not to take OTS complaints seriously. Invariably it sides with governors regardless of their decision decision (good or bad). The OTs are between and rock and a hard place, for they have no one or any entity to seek redress from. It is a waste of time other than for documentation purposes to seek redress through the FCO. The governors are in tune to the one-sided situation and abuse and exploit it. The situation reflects the attitude and behavior in many organizations.

    Is the BVI government perfect or does it have clean hands? No. Agree with E. Leonard that it needs restructuring and reforming. Further, E. Leonard seem to be a disciple of creative destruction and promotes and advises on its virtues. Truth be told, I was not too familiar with term. But in researching it, it seems to be credible and prudent course of action. As such, the COI findings will provide opportunities for creative destruction. It should be a normal process for government anyway. Much has been said pro and con about the COI so I will not comment on it at this time.
  • Wellsuh (30/11/2021, 09:58) Like (0) Dislike (0) Reply
    I think we need to have an r pensive consultancy to study and report back on corruption in the BVI. Anyone know if Claude is available?

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