Release so-called ‘PPP/C-BK agreement’ – Nandlall challenges Williams

first_imgHaags Bosch settlementAs the controversy over who exactly initiated a multimillion US dollar settlement with BK International over the Haags Bosch landfill site continues to rage, former Attorney General (AG) Anil Nandlall on Wednesday rubbished claims by his successor, Basil Williams, that the former People’s Progressive Party/Civic (PPP/C) Government had agreed to compensate the contractor, who threatened legal action after his contract was terminated for shoddy work.Attorney General Basil WilliamsFormer AG Anil NandlallEarlier this year, the current Administration agreed to pay BK International US$5.7 million as an out-of-court settlement for the terminated contract and works completed “satisfactorily”. At that time, Williams had argued that the settlement was necessary, since the Government was fearful of losing a US$10 million lawsuit filed by the contractor.However, Communities Minister Ronald Bulkan subsequently rubbished the AG’s claims and stated that there was no legal action taken and the payout was done on the basis of a mere letter from BK International threatening to sue the Government for US$10 million.Williams has since sought to cast blame on the former Government, which he said, had already agreed to pay BK.But, in a statement on Wednesday, Nandlall challenged Williams to make public the agreement he claimed the PPP/C Government had signed with BK, stating that it was impossible since no such agreement existed.He described the AG’s claim as “an utterly new and incredulous explanation which the nation is now being fed”.“It will be noted that he did not provide a copy of this alleged agreement of the previous Administration to pay BK International. He cannot do so. There is none; unless of course, one is now being concocted. If such an agreement existed, I have no doubt, it would have been produced, publicly, months ago,” Nandlall said.The former AG said he hoped the submission of invoices for payment by the contractor was not interpreted as an agreement by the Government to pay.He added that even though the matter has been in the public domain since earlier this year, such an explanation was never proffered by the Government.In fact, Nandlall recalled that the AG spoke at length on the BK settlement in the Committee of Supply during the consideration of a supplementary budget on August 8, 2016, but this excuse was not provided.“The truth of the matter is if there was an agreement to pay, the payment would have been made and the contract would not have been terminated by the PPP/C Administration. The sole reason for contention was precisely because of the Government’s refusal to pay,” Nandlall explained.He declared that “no amount of interrogating the contract” by the Attorney General would change these facts.Efforts to contact the Attorney General proved futile, as calls to his mobile phone went unanswered.last_img read more