Former Chairman of CLICO Barbados Leroy Parris Suing Cash Strapped Government for Damages

Since his assets were frozen by the court, the former CLICO boss has lamented that he had been experiencing hardshipLeroy Parris (BT)

The mouth of Mr. Hal Gollop, lead lawyer for Leroy Parris,  has been running like a sick nigga botsy of late. His protestations about client Leroy Parris are easily accessed on a weekly basis in the traditional media. How convenient when lawyers and traditional media hide behind the cloak of sub judice to keep the masses ignorant. Our mistake, this is only an interlocutory matter still to be heard!

The CLICO issue is complex and must be delineated within the boundaries of what is legal, moral and political to intelligently inform discussion. Parris and his legal Senior Counsel (SC) to be may yet win the battle to be staged very soon in a law court near you if Gollop’s constitutional motion succeeds, however, the fallout caused by political and moral outrage continues to gain momentum. It appears certain the CLICO issue will bury the political ambition and stain the legacy of the Democratic Labour Party (DLP) for eons to come. It rides the back of this government like the proverbial Albatross.

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Prime Minister Fruendel Stuart Promises to Expose the Names of CLICO EFPA Policyholders

<p><strong>Chris Sinckler</strong>, Minister of Finance (l) <strong>Fruendel Stuart</strong>, Prime Minister and Head of the Civil Service (r)</p>

Chris Sinckler, Minister of Finance (l) Fruendel Stuart, Prime Minister and Head of the Civil Service (r) 

Prime Minister Freundel Stuart has done the unthinkable by breaking his silence on the CLICO mess. To quote him: “. . . Wait. There is going to be a lot to be said on this. Do not mistake my silence for an incapacity to speak. The time will come when all things will be made clear and explained. I ain’t saying anything yet” He added: “I have a list . . . of all of the persons who invested in the Executive Flexible Premium Annuity [EFPA], but I ain’t saying nothing yet. I know all the people who earning quick money, who were entranced by the lure of attractive interest rates. I know them, I have all of the names”.

Given the pace – or lack of it – at which Stuart moves Barbadians should not expect to hear from him anytime soon. Instead CLICO policyholders would prefer to hear the government enunciate a plan to resolve the plight of the policyholders.

So what if the Prime Minister has a list of Barbadians who bought the EFPA? Of course we agree with him greed played a part and high interest rates offered by the Parris led company resulted in the predicament many EFPA policyholders find themselves.  The question we want the prime minister to answer is why was CLICO allowed to sell the EFPA and who should ultimately be responsible.

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A Culture Of Diminishing Corporate Governance

There is a heavy focus on the role former Chairman of CLICO Holdings Barbados Limited Leroy Parris played in the demise of the company. The revelations to be found in the CLICO Final Forensic Report UNSEALED should make sensible Barbadians feel ashamed. A listen to the contribution of Edmund Hinkson to the 2015-2016 Estimates Debate would have cemented the feeling. Hinkson was relentless in his assault of the Speaker of the House Michael Carrington by highlighting the immoral act of withholding client’s monies for several years until ordered recently to pay by a Barbados High Court. During the assault Michael Carrington occupied the Chair. What a farce!

The other embarrassment Barbadians have to suffer is to observe prominent members of society who served as directors on the Board of CLICO Barbados allowed to go about their business without being called to account. One of many functions a Board of Directors has, is to ensure a robust governance framework is established to guide quality decision-making by the management team. Reconciling the findings of the recently unsealed forensic report and the role of the Board of Directors continues to be a challenge if the CLICO mess is to be viewed through a corporate governance lense.

Terrence Thornhill the #2 CLICO Man in Barbados Continues to Get a Free Pass

Enterprise Growth Fund Ltd

Enterprise Growth Fund Ltd

The number two man for many years in the entity that was CLICO Barbados Holdings Ltd (CBH) is Terrence A. Thornhill. He sat and walked next to the embattled former CBH Chairman Leroy Parris. The recent Deloitte’s Forensic Report confirmed what many know and that is Thornhill is the man who has witnessed the unsavoury, immoral and illegal deeds exposed in the forensic report unsealed recently.

The BU household is perturbed at the lack of outrage directed at Thornhill who has been implicated in the CLICO mess. Further, the fact he continues to be Chairman of the Enterprise Growth Fund Limited (EGFL); an important state agency charged with providing venture capital financing to the small medium-sized enterprises, exposes an unwillingness of the citizenry to demonstrate outrage.

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David Thompson and Families First Slush Fund, the Corruption Trail

Each day, as this saga unfolds, more and more of the innocence of Barbadian society gets destroyed. Some Barbadians, who are thinking for themselves, have already raced ahead to recognize that CLICO is just the tip of a national iceberg.The hard-earned money of Barbadian taxpayers has been receiving similar treatment for the last 30 years also Walter Blackman

The BU household agrees with pundits who suggest irreparable harm has been done to the legacy of the late Prime Minister David Thompson caused by the recent revelations contained in the CLICO Final Forensic Report unsealed by Justice William Chandler. Before the CLICO meltdown many Barbadians were prepared to give credit to Thompson for his Families First Campaign and other people centric initiatives. He promulgated the view “Family values are crucial and the role of fathers and mothers is vital to children’s development.” What a noble effort by the late Prime Minister Thompson which sadly appears to be the usual political rhetoric.

Now that the public persona of the late David Thompson has been shattered to smithereens a pandora’s box of questions have to be asked and answered. Monies paid by CLICO Barbados to the Families First Account were managed by the late David Thompson. However it is inconceivable that he and he alone had oversight for the slush fund. Of greater interest is the need to perform an audit to identify inflows to the account from CLICO and other contributors from Barbados and the Caribbean.

Woe is we!

Open Letter to Former Permanent Secretary William Layne: ‘CLICO Was a Time Bomb Waiting to Explode and Explode it Did’

Vernese Brathwaite

Vernese Brathwaite

The CL Financial/CLICO saga continues to occupy the news space in Barbados and regionally. Many have predicted it will take years to unravel if not resolve. And given the sloth of the Barbados Court system and the interlocking interests of politicians and prominent others there is good reason for those with material interest in the matter to batten down for the long haul.

One individual who has had a prominent role to play and a lot to say about the CLICO/Parris matter is William Layne. He is a retired permanent secretary in the ministry of finance  appointed to Chair the CLICO Oversight Committee established by the late prime minister David Thompson. Another little discussed role Layne held was Supervisor of Insurance.  Layne in a hard hitting CLICO exposition titled  RECENT FINANCIAL FAILURES IN THE CARIBBEAN – WHAT WERE THE CAUSES AND WHAT LESSONS CAN BE LEARNT? delivered a few interesting observations on what lessons we can learn about the demise of CLICO in Barbados.

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Does Leroy Parris Maintain a $5,000,000.00 Deposit with the Central Bank of Barbados?

 Dr. DeLisle Worrel

Dr. DeLisle Worrel

BU seeks clarification, in the public’s interest, on a 5 millions dollar deposit listed on an asset disclosure to the Barbados Court in an Affidavit filed by LEROY PARRIS to overturn an order freezing his assets and those of Branlee Consulting Services Inc. BU is unaware the Central Bank of Barbados is authorized to accept deposits from individuals. Last week David Ellis, a friend of Governor Delisle Worrell, asked the same question on national radio. To date the question, not surprisingly, remains unanswered.

Whistleblower Policy Needed–Former CLICO Executives Speak Out

Embattled Leroy Parris flanked by Chis Sinckler, minister of finance and Hal Gollop QC, Parris' lawyer on the campaign trail in 2013

Embattled Leroy Parris flanked by Chis Sinckler, minister of finance and Hal Gollop QC, Parris’ lawyer on the campaign trail in 2013

The failure of CLICO and other failures in the Eastern Caribbean require regional governments to implement a whistleblower policy. It is evident regional regulators are more committed to managing within national boundaries therefore pan Caribbean companies will continue to be a challenge. BU believes a whistleblower program facilitated by Caricom can act as an ancillary mechanism to  support the function of moribund regional regulators. The lack of labour mobility in the Caribbean means individuals are not motivated to risk personal financial hardship and victimization in the name of doing what is ethical and moral.

The following comments were posted in another forum by individuals purporting to be Neval Greenidge and Larry Davis, both former CLICO  executives. There is always the case to question the motives of former employees in a situation like the one unravelling with CLICO. In light of what has transpired all actors who played a part should be clinically interrogated to accurately piece together the truth behind the demise of CLICO Barbados Holdings and subsidiary companies.

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Mariano Browne to Interview Afra Raymond on the CL Financial Bailout

Blogger extraordinaire Trinidadian Afra Raymond will be hosted on The 95 Mandate i95.5 FM radio talk show Friday 6 February 2015 at 10AM to discuss CL Financial bailout.

The 95 Mandate talk show is hosted by Mariano Browne a well known personage to Barbadians whose bio records he was CEO of Caribbean Commercial Bank, a CL Financial owned company and former PNM minister of finance. It is no secret Mariano Browne was fired by Lawrence Duprey as CEO of Caribbean Commercial Bank. As a former CL Financial insider he offers a unique insight into the workings of CL Financial, parent of CLICO.

The coming together of Raymond and Browne promises to be an informative occasion

The $3.33 Million Cheque Issued by CLICO International Life Insurance to Thompson & Associates


The following was extracted from the Forensic Audit of CLICO International Life Insurance Ltd (under Judicial Management): Report as of December 5, 2011

“Included in the balance owing by CHBL is a payment for $3.333mm made by CIL to the law firm of Thompson & Associates (legal advisors to CIL and CHBL) in January 2009, pursuant to an invoice dated December 2008 purportedly for fees or retainers related to various legal matters involving CHBL. Mr. Leroy Parris, the former Chairman of CIL and CHBL authorized the invoice for payment. We have been advised that although payment was made to Thompson & Associates, it was in fact to the benefit of Mr. Parris as partial payment of a “gratuity”. We note that this transaction was not disclosed in the Minutes at that time but was discussed by the Board following the appointment to the Board of the Government representative in mid-2009.”

Canada Loyal Financial to CLICO’s Rescue…?

Canada Loyal Life reported to be coming to rescue CLICO

Canada Loyal Financial reported to be coming to rescue CLICO

There was a report in the local press on the weekend that Canada Loyal Financial is interested in bailing out CLICO. The policyholders have been emitting noises of quiet optimism since the announcement. Some of us however are alarmed a foreigner stands to own a significant acreage of our lands.  If Canada Loyal Financial is able to acquire CLICO it makes a mockery of the government stated claim that it bought the old Heywoods property was in the national interest.  At this point we can only speculate on the Nation newspaper report.

Who is Canada Loyal Financial?

Who Are the Local Partners in Cost-U-Less?

Former Prime Minister David Thompson (l) Former Chairman CLICO Holdings B'dos Ltd rumoured to be local partners in Cost-U-Less

Late Prime Minister David Thompson (l) disgraced former Chairman of CLICO Holdings B’dos Ltd rumoured to be local partners in Cost-U-Less

We do not charge membership fees and believe we can offer low prices to Barbados shoppers, just as we have in our most recent store opening in the Cayman Islands, which was also a partnership with local business people

NorthWest Company trading as Cost-U-Less July 2008

It has been almost five years from the time of the announcement Cost U Less Maybe Coming To Barbados that it launched in Barbados. However, based on consumer feedback the wait has been in vain.  It has been two months since launch and Barbadians continue to wait for the low prices promised. Before the coming of Cost-U-Less the Trinidadians, who now have a vice grip on our food retail and distribution channels, had promised Barbadian consumers the same, that is, we would benefit from economies of scale created by a larger T&T market.

Barbados now finds itself in a situation where we have a new entrant to an already competitive retail food sector.  And it has not demonstrated any appreciable price differentiation in its offering. Sad to say the inevitable must follow.  We created 200 jobs with the coming of Cost-U-Less but SuperCentre and DacostaMannings, owned by the Trinidadians, continue to send home employees.

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The Everton Cumberbatch Versus Leroy Parris, Larry Tatem And Breakers Investment Inc Matter – Part II

Sir Richard Cheltenham (l) Leroy Parris (c) Larry Tatem (r)

A response to BU’s earlier blog – The Everton Cumberbatch Versus Leroy Parris, Larry Tatem And Breakers Investment Inc Matterwas a cry to have sight of the documents for the defendants. We  are pleased to post additional documents which shine light on the other side of this matter. We highly recommend that the BU family read these documents which give insight into how the prominent and ‘deep pockets’ in our society operate. The affidavit of Leroy Parris is of particular interest and instructive in this regard.

This matter is before the courts and, BU understands will be decided shortly. Therefore BU will tread lightly by sounding off within the bounds of fair comment.

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