PM announces inquiry into US$ 94 Million spent on Airport Runway extension

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(Documents added to bottom of story)

Prime Minister Gaston Browne announced moments ago that a forensic audit will be conducted into near US$ 100 million loan by the former United Progressive Party administration.

Browne said the Cabinet agreed that the Audit should be conducted.

He said following the audit, there will be a commission of injury to “put people like Harold Lovell on the stand.”

In the last several weeks, Browne has been insisting that the price tag to extend the runway was unreasonable.

He has called on the United Progressive Party leader Harold Lovell to provide an expiation for the cost compared to the scope of works.

According to the prime minister the cost for construction of the runway by 100 linear feet was over priced.

Also Read:

PM wants Lovell to explain why airport runway loan amounted to US$ 100M

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47 COMMENTS

  1. Great news. PM Brown believes in Inquiries when cabinet believes the people tax monies has been misspent. I hope this is the beginning and not limited to UPP time in office. There are a few incidents in the ALP and the ABLP administration era that would meet the threshold for forensic audits. if he truly believe his words and this is not to discredit his opponents then look for more inquiries to come.

  2. What a country is Antigua and Barbuda. Antigua was the epicenter through, Meinl Bank, of the Odebrecht scandal which has been the largest corruption scandal in the world, however, the government refuses to conduct an enquiry into this matter. While conducting an enquiry into the runway extension, Gaston Browne needs to conduct one into the Odebrecht scandal so that he can take the stand and prove his non-involvement in the scandal.

    • @ CHARLES TABOR

      You ask for the ENQUIRY …Now you get it…..Old People say DO NOT CALL WOLF.

      • J.CARNY I also asked for the Odebrecht bribery scandal enquiry. When will that be convened? I suspect that will never happen since it could mean jail for Gaston Browne.

        • @ CHARLES TABOR
          Stop chatting STUPIDNESS…Harold Lovell will be off to 1735 soon. Hope you listened to Hon.Gaston Browne this afternoon.

    • @Charles Tabor: I agreed with you 100%.However,what you are seeking would never happen under this Administration. I often wondered what happen to the $4 million Euros. Was it really return to the giver?

    • @ Melchesidec – let’s start the investigatio.
      While at it are there any other cases of grave concern that you think should be investigated publicly?

  3. GOOD !!!!! not a thing is wrong with that. Hold the Inquiry. While you holding that Inquiry, hold an Inquiry into:

    Into the Odebrecht scandal;

    Into who forged your signature;

    The missing millions from from Customs;

    Etc etc

    Gaston, always remember: When you try to dig a grave for someone, you might fall into it!

    • @ DESERT ROSE

      If you DO NOT know what you are talking about shut your DAMN MOUTH. Lovell is a short distance from 1735.

      • PETE their will never be an Odebrecht enquiry under Gaston Browne. However, I can assure you that if their was ever an Odebrecht enquiry, as well as the runway Andrade Guitterez enquiry, Gaston Browne would be the one going to jail and not Lovell. The only difference though he would most likely be going to jail in America and not 1735. He would only go to 1735 if an enquiry is conducted here and the ALP is not the government.

      • Pete, Did you read and comprehend the attached documents?
        You said D Rose does not know what he/she is talking about. Are you pretending that you have never heard of the odobrecht scandal or the forged signature or the missing millions from customs?

  4. Hon. Gaston Browne …this is music to the ears of the Citizens of Antigua and Barbuda . Let All the UPP Supporters ( e.g TABOR and DESERT ROSE ) sing for Their supper. Tabor …How can Lovell run for election with the High Court case plus this FORENSIC AUDIT and INQUIRY hanging over His Head. Lovell should do the right thing and RESIGN. Tabor…I am surprised that You Tabor as an ADVISOR to Lovell is not advising Lovell to RESIGN.

    ABLP would NOT tolerate anyone this amount of baggage. ABLP is a TRANSPARENT Government.

  5. There is MAJOR problems within the UPP Camp. Some of the Candidates want to Dump Lovell because They cannot go forward with Lovell in His current situation. The Problem UPP is having is too many Candidates want to be Leader ( E.G ..SERPENT , FRANZ , PEARL ,CEON , ALISTER ). Also 90 % of the UPP Candidates DO NOT have a JOB. How the hell these People want to run a country ?

    • After the election Franz will find himself at the pet store he fondly advertises and he himself will either transform into or John pee pee or the perfect A#S that he is.

  6. I am at a loss to understand why the only two UPP Supporters ( CHARLESWORTH TABOR and DESERT ROSE ) can take so much BEAT UP and TRAMPLED UPON ) …I hoe you both will be honest advise your BELOVED Leader Harold ( Harry ) Lovell to QUIT.

  7. As a UPP supporter I am writing this contribution from an objective point of view. I am appealing to all UPP supporters to take off the blind folders and be honest with ourselves. I have voted UPP all of my life and there is no way that We can go into election 2023 in this current state. I am happy that Knight is away for a few weeks because you cannot CUSS CUSS Gaston Browne each night. You cannot win election with the same Persons calling each night and uttering the same thing.

    My advise to the UPP is going forward talk Policies and ways to uplift Antigua from the ABLP Government.

    Have the Candidates spend more time in Their Constituencies and get to hell off the Radio.

    Let the UPP Candidates be more transparent.

    If We truly want to remove ABLP from office this is my observation.

    Please remember Gaston Browne and ABLP will NOT be an easy walk over.

  8. After the election Franz will find himself at the pet store he fondly advertises and he himself will either transform into or John pee pee or the perfect A#S that he is.

  9. Check out the Following UPP Candidates

    PEARL QUINN WILLIAMS UNEMPLOYED GLADYS POTTER UNEMPLOYED

    FRANZ deFREITAS working 3 hours daily.
    ALLISTER THOMAS UNEMPLOYED

    PETER REDZ UNEMPLOYED

    CLEON ATHILL UNEMPLOYED

    SEAN BIRD UNEMPLOYED

    ALEX BROWNE UNEMPLOYED

    GLADYS POTTER UNEMPLOYED

    These are the some of the CANDIDATES FOR the UPP. Something definitely wrong with this picture. Be in control of your own lives before trying to control others. SHAME SHAME.

    • @Frederick….you may have to change your classification of the former banker. Remember she resigned and found herself in politics. She resigned after she would have been handsomely rewarded for being part of the orchestration whereby poor people were charged exorbitant interest rates on loans. Now she is coming like the chameleon she is literally, mentally and figuratively pretending she cares about the common man. All of ah sudden she is concerned about poor people and their mortgages. She now kay bout how much bank ah charge fuh tan up in ah line fuh draw arf you money. Howeva when she min dey all she did was enjoyed the loot which low her to resign at such ah tenda age.

  10. ELECTION 2023 RESULTS

    ABLP. 17. SEATS

    UPP. 00. SEATS

    DNA. 00. SEATS

    BARBUDA. 00. SEATS

    UPP FINISHED. / DONE. / DEAD

    • Your figures are probably right, Rupert, under the current UPP leadership. Tabor might be a good replacement for Lovell. I hear a lot of people talking. Hmmm.

      • @CONRAD

        Tabor is a COWARD and would run for His Supper. Tabor has too many SKELETONS in the CLOSET. As SUNIDAD mentioned UPP is in denial. How can UPP win election with These Candidates ( LLCs) ?
        This is such an easy WIN for ABLP.

  11. Will he be using the same man from St. Lucia he use to for the ADOMS building which report ended up being hidden from the public but ended up on people’s windscreen?

    By the way, how about an inquiry into the Odebrecht matter how the lands at Morris Bay became tied up by a bank in Dubai?

  12. LOVELL again??? Hasn’t he had enough and done enough??? Already set his legacy as WORST FINANCE MINISTER, BIGGEST LOSER (2 wins 7 losses), ABST SQUANDERER, ROMANTIC RHYTHMS, IMF et al.

    Real tired of all the “accolades” Lovell is racking up with each second the clock ticks toward …..

  13. Too bad people cannot see that this is another of Gaston’s diversion tactics. Thief nah lub see thief with long bag. Nothing but another bluff.
    Before commenting, How many of you even read or understand what is written on those papers?
    People stop following politicians blindly. Let’s demand enquiries on other significant scandals levied against all politicians. Let’s start with:
    – Airport runway vs odobrecht scandals.
    – Gaston vs Asot
    – Bus Scandal vs Land Swapsssssss by the Real estate govt.

  14. if this inquiry was done in 2014-2016 I would agree with it. But to wait till 2021. The persons involved have already moved on. We lost more then this on the WPP and on the side walks, ABIB and other jobs. Makes absolutely no sense to fall into the trap of Lovell and Tabor to waste scares government resources on inquiries at this time. We need every dime we have. Pensioners need to get paid, public servants needs to get paid and creditors are waiting for their monies. Inquiries are much too expensive these days. I really hope Gaston rethink this one. He missed his change in 2014 when we were calling for inquiries. He stood his ground then.

    • Wow FROM THE SIDELINE this is one of the rare moments that you make a lot of sense. Yes, the runway enquiry now makes no sense but it is just a distraction by Gaston from all the major issues confronting this country (and you mention that of the pensioners). You should also remember that the Odebrecht scandal was in the air with Donna Chaia’s comments and people were calling for an enquiry and you know Gaston Browne would figure in the middle of such an enquiry. Election is also in the air so all Gaston is doing is to divert attention from his failed Administration. As I have said you have made some sense unlike BEEF who is pushing for the runway enquiry but not Odebrecht. I am for enquiries into everything although as you say it is expensive. We can find ways of reducing the cost.

      • @ CHARLESWORTH TABOR

        Why are you not answering the Questions directed to You by ERIC CARDEN and RUPERT MANN? Tabor you really know how to dodge Questions. I find you are very selective. Let me remind about the question as follows..

        Concerning Lovell running while having all these HIGH COURT ISSUES.

        Tabor trying to overthrow Lovell as Leader of UPP.

        The latter is a joke. Tabor would NOT run PUBLICLY for anything. He has too much to be EXPOSED.

      • So Charles as long as my comments are inline with yours they make sense. Other than that they make no sense. What a yardstick isn’t it. Well I hope you have read and understood my comments. Cause lately I doubt if you do understand. Given that we have sometimes that we agree on issues tells you that I am very objective with my comments. I say it as it is. And as you can see I am not in agreement with the PM at this time. It is a timing thing. When I and other were calling for investigations he put his foot down and said he will not wast scare government resources. Fine so now he has to be consistant in my opinion. He could have burried Harold since then but he chose not to. And I warned him. I was in the corner of Lenox, we take no prisoners. And a man that runs and walks a way lives to fight another day. These are strategic decisions. UPP needed to be burried since 2014. Note that all the candidates from the have fled the scene except Harold. There is so much that the ABLP could hold the UPP accountable for. In the ten years that they were in office how many audited financials from the period that they were in office have they tabled in Parliament? And How many Special Warrants have they tabled in Parliament? It took the Labour Party to bring them to Parliament. And from the ten years how much money were they over the budget of those years? Over one and a half billion dollars. No accountability was ever provided to the people for that. And you guys want to go back in there to do what? Sorry Tabor not for a long time. You guys need to come better. Much better

    • @From The Sidelines…honesty is the best policy, and you are correct. Many of us, since it was revealed, that the extension and building of the new airport had almost 100% cost overrun called for the project to be audited, by an INDEPENDENT auditing firm.
      Somehow, for some strange reason, at the time I felt the John Ashe scandal involving the former Prime Minister Baldwin Spencer and the IHI matter involving some of his colleagues played a significant role, in his decision back then.
      This is why, the POWER to initiate an inquiry into any, and all malfeasance should not be in the hands of the Prime Minister.
      He’s now using this #ENQUIRY, as a Political Missile programmed to hit Harold Lovell. But hey, this is the shitty, dutty, badmind game of poliTRICKS, and R WE LUB #ugly.

  15. UPP you dropped the political football. When you labor party officials in the cross hairs. You turned a blind eye. When you had them. You pretended the evidence wasn’t enough. You let them resurrect and regain power. Now they are putting your melee up for auction. Which could jail some of you. The one that is calling for inquiry must remember the alphabet boys will not come for a sitting head of government. His time will come. Leroy is a star witness to many conspiracies and crimes.

    • @Freetownson, I did not know that government minister’s can lock up and charge anyone. If the police and DPP only seem to do thing when the ALP is in power, the citizens need to ask why?

      Everyone should get a copy of the book by former inspector Nufield Burnett and perhaps people will get an understanding why the IHI abs other matters never went anywhere and why the Lindquest report was ignored and excuses made why nothing could be done.

  16. @SUNIDAD

    I totally in agreement with SUNIDAD. UPP is a very very weak OPPOSITION with one seat. Jamale Pringle is a very WEAK OPPOSITION. UPP is behaving like They are the GOVERNMENT which is very stupid. ABLP has a track record and is a very STRONG Government. Now you have SERPENT, FRANZ ,HAROLD on Observer Radio every Saturday before the BROWNE and BROWNE show on POINTE FM just CUSSING the Hon.Gaston Browne. UPP LAZY CANDIDATES need to work in Their Constituencies. Nobody knows Them. Get off the Radio and stop chatting the same thing over and over. UPP is heading for all Their CANDIDATES losing Their deposits. AWFUL situation.

  17. The power of an INQUIRY to be initiated, into any malfeasance regarding government funds should not be in the hands or mind, of the Prime Minister but MUST be automatically triggered after a FORENSIC AUDIT is done by an independent auditing firm on any Government department which must be audited, at least once every three(3) to four(years), regardless of who is the Ruling Arm of the Government.

    This present inquiry into the cost overrun regarding the extension of the airport runaway and terminal is a Political missile programmed to hit its target Harold Lovell and the UPP, at the right time(ELECTION)!

  18. In politics timing is everything. This is not by accident that Honourable Brown is calling an enquiry into a little known issue. I always say that Gaston is a political animal and whether his supporters want to accept it or not, this is not for accountability and transparency. He would have seen something which inform him that his opponents needs to be slowed and his supporters need a boost. Independents would agree UPP momentum over the past few months has been strong and strategic. Whether they could maintain it or not is a different question but the recent revelations of the CIP spend is an embarrassment to the ABLP administration and they needed to fire back. I see the supporters on both sides are getting excited. Take my advice. Pick SENSE out of NONsense.

  19. Esther 5: 11-14
    And Haman told them of the glory of his riches, and the multitude of his children, and all the things wherein the king had promoted him, and how he had advanced him above the princes and servants of the king.
    12 Haman said moreover, Yea, Esther the queen did let no man come in with the king unto the banquet that she had prepared but myself; and to morrow am I invited unto her also with the king.
    13 Yet all this availeth me nothing, so long as I see Mordecai the Jew sitting at the king’s gate.
    14 Then said Zeresh his wife and all his friends unto him, Let a gallows be made of fifty cubits high, and to morrow speak thou unto the king that Mordecai may be hanged thereon: then go thou in merrily with the king unto the banquet. And the thing pleased Haman; and he caused the gallows to be made.

    Please read on to the end of chapter 7.

    • Esther 7: 8-10
      Then the king returned out of the palace garden into the place of the banquet of wine; and Haman was fallen upon the bed whereon Esther was. Then said the king, Will he force the queen also before me in the house? As the word went out of the king’s mouth, they covered Haman’s face.
      9 And Harbonah, one of the chamberlains, said before the king, Behold also, the gallows fifty cubits high, which Haman had made for Mordecai, who had spoken good for the king, standeth in the house of Haman. Then the king said, Hang him thereon.
      10 So they hanged Haman on the gallows that he had prepared for Mordecai. Then was the king’s wrath pacified.

  20. @CHARLES TABOR and DESERT ROSE

    Please advise your UPP ( UNHAPPY PEOPLE PARTY) Friend Alister Thomas to pay Mr. Warner ( 92 years Old) rent for his house. This is AWFUL. Alister Thomas is running for Public office?????

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