Kellman, Sinckler and Lashley: GROTTO Housing Project and the Ineffective Public Accounts Committee
Chris Sinckler, Minister of Finance
Michael Lashley, Minister of Transport
Denis Kellman M.P., Minister of Housing
The following poster was posted to BU by Sunshine Sunny Sunshine. It resonates with the BU household for many reasons. Unlike many Barbadians the BU household has not forgotten that three ministers of government were requested to appear before the Public Accounts Committee (PAC) to explain questionable decisions concerning the GROTTO housing project. BU has repeatedly questioned the decision by government to pay a dividend of 25 million dollars from the Housing Credit Fund as one example. To be fair to Minister Kellman – the most accessible member of government – we have asked him to explain the decision to pay 25 million from the HCF many times.
We have had to witness repeatedly in the post Independence period the work of this important committee of parliament frustrated by members to parliament. How can we boast of living in a democratic system of government and at the same time frustrate the workings of the PAC and the Auditor General? Why no attempt to honestly execute matters under the remit of the Committee of Privileges?
One day coming soon!
The summons by the Public Accounts Committee for Minister Kellman to attend a briefing regarding questionable financial practices in the Grotto High Rise Project was ignored by him and two other ministers.The reasons provided by them were as frivolous as their attempt to avoid being questioned. It seems that they all believe that they are above any laws of the land and do not have to give an account for any decisions they make, regardless of how eye brow raising they maybe. As the ministers sought to vindicate themselves regarding the laws governing the committee and the motive of the opposition leader as a woman on a witch hunt looking to cast blame, the fact that they refuse to turn up are grounds for interpreting their behaviours as an admission of possible guilt deserving of further investigation. The assumption gathered is that Minister Kellman is not as squeaky clean as he would like the world to believe. We already know that this minister has a propensity to speak out of turn and make utterances that make him look like darn fool. As a result, his attempts to make the whole Barbados believe that normal financial conduct was involved in the Grotto deal and that no financial rules by him or anyone affiliated with him were broken, only increases the assumption that there is more to discover than what is already given as a known. In addition, we also know that he has little regard for authority and rules by the ignorance he displayed in ignoring the island wide emergency shut down during the threat of a serious storm system that threatened the island. To him, opening his Moon Town Mall was a far greater priority than safety. His behaviour is repugnant and distasteful. If the People of St. Lucy believes that sardines, cornbeef and biscuits makes for a good politician, they better think differently about this minister, because he is prospering while they are paupering begging for his bread.