The Government has been in office for over a year and is yet to set eyes on the contracts for the Amaila Falls Hydro project and the Specialty Hospital. This was today, disclosed to media operatives by Minister of State, Joseph Harmon at a post-Cabinet press briefing.
Minister Harmon was at the time responding to a question on the accusations made by Opposition Leader Bharrat Jagdeo on the Government’s failure to make public the details of contracts which are now being reviewed, awarded and implemented.
“I can say this to Mr. Jagdeo, that there are some contracts that had so many confidentiality that they are so deeply buried that until now we can’t see them and I make reference to at least two such contracts one is the contract of the specialty hospital that he spoke about,” Minister Harmon stated.
The Minister of State further explained that prior to the commencement of the press conference, he contacted Finance Minister, Winston Jordan and, “up to now he ain’t see that contract as yet.”
The Minister said that millions of taxpayers’ dollars have been spent on the contract and the former administration has never ‘brought it to light’.
“The second one has to do with the Amaila Falls contract, never seen it, in fact while we were in the opposition, we were invited here to these offices to meetings and we were told by the Government that these are confidential arrangements and we are basically briefing you on some of them but where is the contract, where is it?” Harmon asked.
Minister Harmon advised that the Government has nothing to hide and operates fully on the ethic of transparency and accountability.
“Every week I come here and I release the contracts that are debated or brought to Cabinet… we are prepared to let all these things go and this is what I do here every week, I report on what Cabinet has done and what contract has been signed, and I let you know what this is about so there is nothing secret about this administration,” Minister Harmon stated.
The Minister of State said that although the government is in office for a short period, it is cognisant that is has a responsibility to ensure good governance .
“And so while we have to pick up the pieces, we also have to reconstruct to make sure we have a full understanding of what the previous administration did in very important sectors and the economy of this country,” he concluded.