For years it has been an open secret that all of the social safety net programmes run by the NNP regime are riddled with corruption.
No lesser person than Anthony Boatswain, former Finance Minister, called in to the Sundays With George Grant programme after the NNP defeat in 2008, to advise the NDC government to review these programmes because of rampant irregularities.
It is a bit strange, therefore, to see the sudden flurry of investigations into corrupt practices within the debushing, beach cleaning and housing programmes, especially in St. Patrick West.
Minister Bowen’s claim that nothing could be done before because people were unwilling to testify, is laughable. Mr. Bowen is an engineer, not a detective nor a lawyer. If people complained to him as MP or minister, all he had to do was inform the police so that they could investigate.
Now that investigations have finally begun, the people must demand that they be allowed to continue without political interference.
We also hope that not only the small fish will be targeted but that any MP, minister or political aide who is found to be involved in corruption, be brought to justice.
For too long, the NNP has been abusing the resources of the state for nakedly partisan purposes. Contracts are awarded to party supporters without any bidding.
There are credible reports of massive kickback schemes with these contracts. An urgent investigation is needed into allegations that government ministers have used “front” men and women to set up security, construction and garbage collection companies, which are then awarded huge government contracts.
Though it is widely believed that the current investigations are nothing but smoke screens, it is an indication that NNP and corruption go hand in hand. They cannot be trusted with small things; imagine what would happen if NNP is in charge when we start producing oil!
For Grenada to grow, Mitchell and NNP MUST go!