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Commission on inquiry team heads back to UK until Easter

Commission on inquiry team heads back to UK until Easter

The Commission of Inquiry team will not be solely stationed in the British Virgin Islands for the 6-month process that will allow for the investigation of malfeasance in Government and public service over recent years.
The team will depart the territory on February 4th and intends to return by Easter, providing that there no Covid-induced travel restrictions.

This was confirmed by Steve Chandler, Secretary to the Commission of Inquiry who said “It has always been the Inquiry team’s intention to split its time between BVI and London to achieve this. The Commissioner and the Secretary to the Commission will return to the UK on Thursday (4 February) to consult with the soon to be appointed Counsel to the Commission to consider our detailed procedures and the initial wave of information the Commission has received and continues to receive.”

“It is hoped the Inquiry team will return before Easter, COVID travel restrictions permitting. Proposed oral hearings will take place in BVI after Easter to be concluded no later than the end of May. Again precise timings are of course dependent on COVID travel restrictions in place at the time.”

Commissioner Gary Hickinbottom began public consultations yesterday February 1st, with scheduled visits to Virgin Gorda and Jos Van Dyke, where he was able to speak with persons on a private setting. The Commissioner’s visit to Anegada was postponed due to unfavourable sea conditions. If possible the Commissioner will arrange to visit later this week on Wednesday 3 February.

The purpose of the COI is to establish whether there is evidence of corruption, abuse of office or other serious dishonesty that has taken place in public office in recent years, and if so what conditions allowed this to happen.

The Commissioner will provide a report of his findings and his recommendations for next steps to the Governor within approximately 6 months for the Governor’s consideration.
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