The opposition People’s Progressive Party intends to refile private criminal charges for corruption against the government in the construction of D’Urban Park facilities using as evidence the Auditor General’s 2017 report, says Leader of the Opposition Bharrat Jagdeo.
He stated the party’s intention to file the charges in response to a question on why allegations, he made yesterday at his weekly press conference, against several government ministers were not reported to the police.
On the last occasion that the party filed private criminal charges against five government ministers, he said, they were withdrawn by the Director of Public Prosecutions (DPP) on the grounds that the charges were not investigated by the police.
This time around, Jagdeo said, “Now that the audit report is out, we will take the audit report and send it to the police.”
The party may refile some of the criminal private charges, he said, because they would want to see if the DPP will dismiss the charges on the cause of good governance as she had said earlier.
Asked about the investigations which, he said, his party was to going to intensify after the local government elections in relation to the alleged corrupt activities and to name the ministers involved, Jagdeo in turn asked the reporter to ask that question of a particular government minister.
He continued, “We will do more work in these areas. We see some substantiated in the audit report.” He said there was more information forthcoming.
On reasons why allegations were not submitted to the police for investigations and why the party will have to conduct its own investigations, Jagdeo cited the delay in action. He noted the case in which the Public Procurement Commission (PPC) found Public Infrastructure Minister David Patterson had breached the procurement laws in the award of a contract to do a feasibility study on a new Demerara River bridge. This was reported to the Special Organised Crime Unit and action is yet to be taken. The evidence was presented in a PPC report and the police would not have had much investigations to do, he said.
In the same way former ministers of his cabinet were hauled in for investigations, Jagdeo said, SOCU promised that they would have called in Cabinet ministers for interviews but they have not done this as yet.