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I’m mad! $1M ferry terminal contract should be for locals

I’m mad! $1M ferry terminal contract should be for locals

Political commentator and talk show host, Claude Skelton Cline has strongly criticised the government for contracting a foreign company to provide design and management services to rebuild the West End Ferry Terminal.

Premier Andrew Fahie recently announced that the $1,048,909 contract was awarded to German company, INROS Lackner SE. At the time of the announcement, Fahie said the million-dollar price tag did not include the construction costs; stating the Recovery & Development Agency (RDA) would put that out for tender at a later stage.

But while appearing on his Honestly Speaking radio show yesterday, Skelton Cline said every expert and expertise needed to develop the territory is already here.

“How is it possible for a German company to come into these Virgin Islands, bid on projects that locals bid on – [locals] with the skillset, with the experience, with the expertise [to] win, be awarded a million-dollar contract? The million dollars that need to stay here. The million dollars that need to revolve here. We’re the ones that need the money. We’re the ones that need the employment,” Cline said.

Skelton Cline, who is a former government consultant, rubbished the notion that the project was open to global bids due to Caribbean Development Bank (CDB) criteria.

“Nonsense, I don’t wanna hear it,” the radio host said.

Doesn’t the BVI have designers and project managers?

He questioned how monies could continue to be sent out of the territory to construct something as simple as a ferry dock.

“We don’t know how to build docks? We don’t have designers here? We don’t’ have project management here?” Skelton Cline questioned.

“This thing should be for locals only, especially at a time like this. And we should be unapologetic about declaring that and mandating that,” Skelton Cline stated.

He said he was upset about the whole ordeal; adding that the BVI needed to start believing in the competencies of its own people and stop letting banks and other organisations say why locals were not eligible to man projects in the territory.

“I’m mad. I’m mad as hell. And I don’t give a good hot chocolate who thinks what,” he said. “Our people deserve better than this!”


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