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No side should 'attempt' CoI recommendations without speaking to VI - Premier

No side should 'attempt' CoI recommendations without speaking to VI - Premier

Following calls for the Premier, Andrew A. Fahie (R1) to reject a Governor John J. Ranking, CMG proposed timeline for the publishing of the CoI Report, Hon Fahie has responded to those calls by stating that he cannot lead through emotions and rather, must follow the constitution.

“There’s a Constitution, the Constitution states clearly what the role of the Governor is, and what authority the Governor [has] in terms of his post, with the Commission of Inquiry Act,” Hon Fahie said.

Premier Fahie was at the time responding to questions from the media during a one-on-one Press Conference on current matters, today, April 22, 2022, streamed live on the GIS Facebook page where he also noted that the original CoI Act must be amended for today's era.

The Governor’s Office, in its CoI report timeline published on April 21, 2022, had indicated that the report will first be shared with the Premier and political party leaders in the House of Assembly (HoA), ahead of meetings in the UK.


Report publishing set out in timeline by Governor Rankin


The Governor’s Office, in its CoI report timeline published on April 21, 2022, had indicated that the report will first be shared with the Premier and political party leaders in the House of Assembly (HoA), ahead of meetings in the UK.

The Premier and political party leaders will then discuss the report with UK Ministers and the Governor in the UK, before the report is published.

However, Social Commentator and radio talk show host, Claude O. Skelton-Cline has criticized the publication timeline as not ideal given the people of the VI will be excluded from the process and will not see the report ahead of the UK meetings.

Premier Fahie in response said, “I see this unfolding where the people of the Virgin Islands will get their copy of the report, everyone will have their say,” he said.

Talkshow Host and Social Commentator, Claude O. Skelton-Cline has criticized the publication timeline as not ideal given the people of the VI will be excluded from the process and will not see the report ahead of the UK meetings.


Public should be informed before recommendations implemented - Hon Fahie


The Premier assured, however, “Neither side or any stakeholder should attempt any recommendation without speaking to the people of the Virgin Islands, getting their input.”

Meanwhile, Premier Fahie speaking on the reputational damage of the CoI said he remain resolute that the terms of reference were too broad, “I would say that this one here is one that… I’m just mystified and it is regrettable how some of this has been handled.”

Hon Fahie said the CoI could have been dealt with in a much more respectable manner, where the Governor could have requested information from the Premier, “if there were issues that the last Governor [Augustus J.U. Jaspert] saw I think that he could have flagged them and stated them,” he said.

Hon Premier Fahie said he was deeply concerned about statements made in the public about alleged financial mismanagement in the VI under his watch, ‘In my deepest of heart, I knew that was not true,” he said.

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