Minister Ferguson responds to chilly AC allegations
The Minister of Transport, Rodwell Ferguson has taken to social media to respond to criticisms he has been receiving in the wake of a letter he wrote to his CEO, Marconi Leal, Jr. The letter dated February 23 tells Leal quote “With immediate effect, any transaction above five thousand dollars…must come to my attention before any purchase order/payment is made, for my scrutiny” Unquote. However, Ministry Chief Executive Officers are the chief accounting officers for their ministries and the Minister cannot interfere but it appears in this case, that’s what Minister Ferguson is doing – and Ferguson has come under criticism for it. In his own Facebook post today, Minister Ferguson said in part quote “I will maintain my integrity. It is estimated that Government loses an estimated 100 million dollars each year because of misappropriation of funds in one way or the other. I am not alluding that any hanky-panky is going on. While you will say that the CEO’s are the accounting officers, I beg the question who do they account to” Unquote.
It appears that Minister Ferguson had a lot to get off his chest because in his Facebook post today, he also took time to address allegations over the purchase of air conditioning units. The issue was raised on the Opposition’s mouthpieces, The Guardian and WAVE Radio, during its morning show where a caller made some comments about Minister Ferguson and the units. Without getting in the details, Minister Ferguson took umbrage to the comments and threatened legal action. He said quote, “I maintain honesty and integrity in what I do even before I was in Government. I want the guardian newspaper to call name about the installation of 25 new ac at my place, then they will face the wrath of the law. I can hold my head high, nobody and absolutely nobody can say I use my office for private gain.” Unquote. Separately, the Ministry issued a statement denouncing the comments, saying in part quote “For the record, there is absolutely no truth to the information contained in the post, nor in what was stated on Wave Radio. Ten A/C units were purchased by the Ministry of Transport to be placed at the ministry’s offices in the south. All A/C units have been installed.” End quote. The Ministry added that it will pursue every legal avenue to bring action against the owner/operators of the blog, as well as against Wave Radio, for the clear slander of a government minister.