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JAMAICA | PNP pleased about fraud investigation at Dunns River

Opposition Shadow Minister of Planning and Development Anthony Hylton Opposition Shadow Minister of Planning and Development Anthony Hylton
Kingston, Jamaica, August 22, 2018: Opposition Shadow Minister of Planning and Development Anthony Hylton, says he is encouraged by the action taken by the Urban Development Corporation (UDC) to enable the investigation of an apparent fraud at the world famous Dunn’s River Falls.

However, Hylton says the opposition People’s National Party (PNP) remains impatient for the report from the Office of the Contractor General (OCG) on his findings on the sale of Rooms on the Beach property in Ocho Rios, St Ann.

The OCG was asked to probe the sale of the UDC-owned property because it was alleged that the transaction, involving overseas investors was executed without due regard to the valuation report.

The opposition spokesman said it was likely that Jamaica did not get value for money in the deal because it appeared the process was breached by persons of power with vested interests.

The last status report on the investigation was made in June 2018, when the OCG confirmed by way of responding to media queries that, at least, one government minister was questioned in relation to the sale. At that time, the OCG indicated that the investigation was almost complete.

Since then, no information has been provided to the public by either the UDC or the OCG.  "It is full time now for the country to be told what is the present status of the probe into the sale of the property and whether a minister of government used his authority to influence the sale of the property," said Mr Hylton.

“I am, therefore, formally calling on the Office of the Contractor General to tell the public directly what is the status of his probe into the sale of the Rooms on the Beach property, and to confirm whether a government minister used his authority to interfere and determine the outcome of the negotiation,” Mr Hylton stated.

He said, this is yet another example of the tragedy of governance afflicting the Holness-led government, where it seems to be a normalized behaviour for ministers and other officials to use their authority to intervene in established due process to corrupt an already tested and proven system of governance.  

The Rooms on the Beach property is owned by Montego Beach Limited, a subsidiary of National Hotels and Properties Limited, which is also a subsidiary of the UDC.

 

  • Countries: Jamaica

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