UK should pay for T&C enquiry says committee

| 06/04/2010

(CNS): The UK’s Foreign Affairs Committee has said that the UK government should be funding the probe into corruption in the Turks and Caicos Islands as it bears some responsibility for what happened in the territory. In a new report the committee said it had grave concerns about the territory’s future and its precarious financial situation. Chair of the Committee, Mike Gapes (left), warned that the British Government had to pay for the current investigation otherwise it would undermine its own credibility in its use of reserved powers, not just in TCI but in the other Overseas Territories as well.

Gape criticised the amount of time the investigation was taking and warned that while the UK’s overriding goal had to be to restore democracy, unless theinvestigation was concluded properly there could be little hope of free and fair elections by July 2011.
"It is essential that the issues identified by us in our 2008 report and by the Commission of Inquiry are resolved to secure the well-being of the territory, or there may be a loss in public confidence,” Gape stated. "The overriding aim of the current British administration of the TCI must be to restore democratic self-government as soon as purging of the corrupt and dysfunctional political system has been completed and entrenched. It has already been twelve months since the Commission’s interim report and still no decisive action has been taken against those suspected of corruption.”
The chair said the idea that direct rule could end in July 2011 was unrealistic since, if elections were to go ahead on that timetable, there was a real danger that politicians facing serious allegations of corruption could liquidate their assets and put funds beyond the reach of the authorities or seek to use bribery and intimidation to engineer a return to office.
“The Government should reassure the people of the TCI that a new constitution will not be put in place, nor elections held, until there is absolute confidence that the necessary reforms have been fully embedded,” Gape added.
He said the committee was concerned that the UK Government has failed to adequately fund the Special Investigation and Prosecution Team (SIPT), which was presently relying on money from the already overstretched TCI government. Gape said the SIPT was taking funds that are desperately needed for healthcare and policing and that the argument that the UK should not pay was flawed.
“The UK Government was culpable in allowing a culture of systemic corruption to develop in the TCI unchecked, and now that it is officially intervening it has a responsibility to follow through with the required financial commitment,” Gape said.  “It is unreasonable to expect the people of the TCI to fund investigations and prosecutions relating to corruption for which they were not responsible. The UK Government must fully fund the SIPT or risk undermining its own credibility in its use of reserved powers in not just the TCI but in the other Overseas Territories."
The report states that the lack of UK funding has prevented the Special Prosecutor from fully investigating the allegations raised during the 2008–09 enquiries.  The committee said that twelve months have past since Sir Robin Auld produced his interim report but no decisive action has been taken to proceed against the politicians and others suspected of serious corruption.
“The longer this damaging delay continues, the greater the risk that the moves to eradicate corruption from public life in TCI may founder,” the committee stated, adding that the UK government was being naive in relation to the potential financial pressures likely to be faced by future governments in the TCI, and the capacity of wrongdoers to impede and frustrate the SIPT’s investigations.
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Comments (21)

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  1. Anonymous says:

    Stop official and political corruption and this will not happen do we hear about such investigations in Bermuda or BVI, no no, NO!

    It seems that their leaders are true representatives for the entire country and their sole intent is to do right by their country and people.  Cayman needs direct rule before we sell off, give away and squander every resource of this country and there will be nothing of value left  for the next generation.

  2. Anonymous says:

    Reminding everyone that Balentine and Gibbs are the ones doing this. They are working in the Foreign Office.

  3. Anonymous says:

    We should not want to give the UK any reason to do here what was done in TCI, but I am very afraid that this is what will happen if the political division don’t stop.  When all is said and done and the dye is cast the only people that will suffer will be Caymanians.  I hope it won’t be too late then as it seems to be for TCI.  Please read this article http://www.allvoices.com/contributed-news/5329896-ousted-former-premier-michael-misick-speaks-out-on-crisis-in-turks-and-caicos

    • Anonymous says:

      I like Weatherall’s thinking on political rights for non-belongers.  The writing is on the wall for the similar rights abuse which currently continues in Cayman . . . .

  4. Anonymous says:

    It is a pity that the Turks & Caicos investigation into corruption within their government has come to a stand still because I would love to see it completed & the whole truth be exposed, including those involving the players in Cayman. Please UK, finish your investigations into corruption in the Turks & Caicos government so that those in Cayman that were involved will also be exposed! PLEASE DO CAYMAN THAT FAVOR! Let the truth be known.

  5. Anonymous says:

    This is what happens when you have party politics and politicians care more about power than country.  The British Government is blameless on this one, blame the TCI politicians for this.

     

     

     

  6. Isabella Reyes Flores says:

    Why cant the people of Cayman see that the UK does ot have any good intentions towards the Islands.   I do believe that if this depression continues on the people of Cayman, People from the UK living here will need to watch their backs.  People are talking some not so good things.

  7. Anonymous says:

    The "Cayman connection" in the TCI political corruption investigation must be praying extremely hard that the UK government continues to refuse to fund the investigation any further! Why do criminals always get these lucky breaks in life? However, it willeventually catch up, if not in this life then in the next! They will pay, one way or the other!

  8. I dont know!!! says:

    Boy I sure hope those Labourites are sent fishing  and the Conservatives take over the government in the UK, this way we may have a chance recouping some of the almost CI$7,000,000.00 that were taken from us  taxpayers in Cayman.

    • you know says:

      So does this mean Cayman will return all the billions that were taken from the taxpayers in other countries?

      • Anonymous says:

         What money was taken from tax payers in other countries?  It’s time for you people to stop making false allegation and start proving it.

        • Really? says:

          Is there a fourth island called "Cloud Cuckoo Land" becase this poster is on it.

  9. Anonymous says:

    CNS

    Well done!  I like your article:

    UK sets up Chagos Islands marine reserve

    • Anonymous says:

      Seriously have you been there or done business there?

      Obviously not or you wouldn’t be making school boy comments.

      T&C is a glimpse of Cayman’s future. The crime, corruption, lack of morals and incompetence of the local government made it necessary for the UK to come in and help before it became the rogue state it was heading towards.

      Once the remaining businesses have upped sticks and left Cayman, it will be the same here. At least Turks is a beautiful scenic place and will have something left when they can overcome the crime and corruption problems and still salvage some tourism.

      Unfortunately cayman doesnt have the luxury of scenery. Even the world famous beaches are massively over developed and the rest of the island is like a mini florida, but with a worse crime problem and a morally corrupt society full of hypocritical bible bashers.

      • Bodden says:

        Although T&C’s government was becoming corrupt, has it occurred to you that they were just making every opportunity to puff up their stance that the T&C cannot rely on their own as a soveriegn nation. So they seized the financial records and did with the funds what they wanted to do. At the same time, T&C loses their valuable reputation for any further tourism advancement. Behind the T&C forces, the UK military and puppets is using the Island and crown lands for their own purposes. The people are not being consulted, because the people are protrayed on a much lower level than them.  Racism (color of their skin matters) – YES, I SAID IT!!!  Would they do this to a white colony or the Faulkland Islands???

        And they did all of this to get to CAYMAN!!!

        But I guess, you have too much of a pebble-mind to realize this!

        Cayman Islands is the Little Switzerland!  Some precedent had to be made first in order to get to Cayman. Coincidentially, the CORRUPTION issue was brought up here!

        This was not coincedence. Cayman always had CORRUPTION!  WHY NOW???  AND WHY DID GOV. JACK ALL OF A SUDDEN TRY TO FIGHT CORRUPTION???

        And they complain we are making up conspiracy against them when they want us to tax and damage our financial industry. Look at what they did to the Chagossians – these same people!

        But I guess you must be from the UK, or so blind to see we are human beings!

  10. LP says:

    Lol

    By declaring British Rule on the poor Turks and Caicos people, they have probably appropriated or channel much funds already for their own interest in the UK – all behind the UN’s back.

    Welcome to the new world!

    • M.O.G. says:

      Please expand your deluded conspiracy theories because at the moment your post is just garbage.

  11. Anonymous says:

    The UK Foreign Affairs Committee should also instruct the UK to pay for the millions the Cayman Islands had to pay for their stupid team of investigators that came here for Holiday.

    • John Evans says:

      You could apply all those comments to the SPIT/Operation Tempura/Operation Cealt fiasco.

      It’s a very useful and timely occurence because a UK court just ruled that I could not pursue my claim for expenses against the Metropolitan Police – the Judge (who repeatedly referred to the ‘Virgin Islands’ during his comments and appeared to believe that I was abroad on holiday!)decided that any claim had to be made in against the CIG.

      Needless to say that ruling is being challenged and this opens up a whole new can of worms.

       

      • Raffaele says:

        Poor old Johhnny Evans he just can’t win boy they really did a number on you bro. You now understand what a lot of decent Caymanians who over the years have gone through when they tried to do the right thing and report certain unscrupulous Criminals in this society who had official & political Friends in London. It’s about the money old Boy right and wrong got nothing to do with it and corruption is described as immoral behaviour not criminal in Whitehall  Foreign Control Office should be renamed MOSS main office of subversion and sedition.