(Photo Credit: Clifton Skelton/BVI Platinum News)
Weeks after details about the mismanagement and wastage of millions of tax payers' dollars were unveiled by the new Board of the BVI Airports Authority (BVIAA), Premier and Minister for Finance, Hon. Andrew Fahie dropped a bombshell by revealing that Government must urgently find over $5M to prevent the airport’s shutdown.
Hon. Fahie made the disclosure during the August 2 continuation of the House of Assembly sitting. He told legislators that the need for money was revealed at a meeting that Government was summoned to that morning.
“This morning my Government members were invited to a meeting with one of the statutory boards and all they were doing was holding their head when they went through what the urgent matters are. We left from there urgently needing, with the Financial Secretary there, $5.8 million dollars,” the Premier explained.
Hon. Fahie noted that the urgently needed funds were not for new matters, but for old situations that had festered to that point.
“Problems that were not touched that were left there manifesting,” he said.
“They showed us documents...saying if you don’t take care of this, that gonna happen,” Hon. Fahie disclosed.
He also mentioned that $5M was not the final sum, but rather what was needed now to remedy the situation.
“It’s more than that — $5.8 is what’s needed now, right now. The board members weren’t the ones speaking, it was those on staff showing us the correspondences for the airport. We need $5.8M right now to deal with some things for the airport to avoid it from shutting down,” the Premier disclosed.
On July 16 in a statement to the House of Assembly, Hon. Fahie stated that mismanagement prevailed at the airport.
“In the one month that the new Board of the BVIAA has been in place, they have uncovered a rabbit hole of mismanagement, deception, profligacy and quite possibly misappropriation of millions of dollars of taxpayers’ money. I call it a rabbit hole, Mr. Speaker, because it just keeps getting deeper and deeper, twisting and turning in unexpected and startling ways, as if it were some kind of Wonderland,” he told the House.