Former Finance Minister, Senator Nazim Burke has once again spoken out against the Citizenship By Investment (CBI) Programme that has been implemented by the Keith Mitchell-led New National Party (NNP) Government.
Sen. Burke who is now the Political Leader of Congress addressed the CBI programme during a pocket meeting held at the Belle Vue Junction in the St. George’s North-east constituency.
The leader of the main opposition National Democratic Congress (NDC) believes that the CBI Programme is not properly organised.
“When we expressed concern that the programme was not designed to ensure that due diligence will be done, they criticised us,” he told the gathering.
He felt the State does not have the capacity to do the required searches and due diligence for the CBI Programme.
He suggested that an international firm, which possesses the understanding and appreciation to conduct the screening of applicants outside of Grenada, must be hired to do the job for Grenada.
Sen. Burke expressed fears that there is a security risk because international terrorists can come through the CBI Programme.
He said these people can easily buy Grenada’s economic citizenship and passports.
The Congress Leader believes those who are trusted with screening CBI applicants are not able to conduct a thorough screening.
He identified the wife of Health Minister Nickolas Steele as being one of the persons, along with former President of the Senate, Lawrence Joseph and his wife, Anande Trotman-Joseph who is the Deputy Chairperson of the Integrity Commission as being among those who are agents.
Dr. Mitchell who recently came to the defense of the CBI Programme spoke of it being flawless.
About two months ago, THE NEW TODAY broke the story of one CBI operative who is attached to the Nevis-based NTL Trust is being accused of engaging in fraud with a CBI application.
Millionaire businessman Roger Ver has accused Robert Martin Oveson of NTL, an approved CBI agent of fraudulently taking away US$1 million from him for the Levera project in exchange for an economic citizenship passport that he never got.
The controversial Oveson has reportedly since resigned as a Director of the company engaged in the Levera project in the north of the island.