DENZIL DOUGLAS: “PM TIMOTHY HARRIS BAD FOR BUSINESS”. CALLS ON HARRIS TO RELEASE SOCIAL SECURITY AND SIDF REPORTS

Social Security and the SIDF under the Microscope
Social Security and the SIDF under the Microscope

Basseterre, St. Kitts, November 15, 2018 – St. Kitts and Nevis’ Prime Minister and Minister of Finance, Dr. the Hon. Timothy Harris “is bad for business.”

That’s the view of Leader of the Opposition, The Rt. Hon. Dr. Denzil L. Douglas as he made a call for the release of several reports from the Sugar Industry Diversification (SIDF), the St. Christopher and Nevis Social Security Board, the Hurricane Relief Fund, the Sustainable Growth Fund (SGF).

He makes the call as Prime Minister Harris continues to block the International Monetary Fund (IMF) from publishing the Staff Report for 2018 following the Article IV Consultation and the Eastern Caribbean Central Bank (ECCB) pulling its 2018 Economic and Financial Review for St. Kitts and Nevis from its website.

“Dr. Harris is bad for business in this country and our business men and women in the private sector should be very concerned about the impact that his corrupt practices would have on the viability of their businesses and their ability to fairly and profitably compete in the local market,” said the former prime minister and minister of finance.

Dr. Douglas said the poor governance record of the Timothy Harris administration presents a clear and present danger to the economic viability of St. Kitts and Nevis, “the economic development of our country; the economic welfare of our people; the integrity of our national market and it tarnishes the image of our country as a safe and attractive place to do business and invest.”

“By hiding these reports and documents which assess the economic standing of our country, Dr. Harris is clearly attempting to present a distorted picture of progress and prosperity that by all figures emerging out of 2017 reports does not exist,” said Douglas, also the National Political Leader of the St. Kitts-Nevis Labour Party (SKNLP).

“These reports are already about two years behind, with the last one issued in October 2017, covered the Accounts up to 2015.  Where is the 2018 report that would cover 2016?” he asked.

Dr. Douglas said the people of St. Kitts and Nevis want to know how their Social Security monies are being managed since the Timothy Harris-led Team Unity Government has been in office.

“Do you mean to tell me that the public will go into another year and perhaps a general election without knowing anything at all about what is happening in Social Security during their entire term? This is totally unacceptable,” Dr. Douglas said.

He said the citizens and residents demand prime Minister Harris, who is also the Minister of Finance publishes the audited financial reports for the Sugar Industry Diversification Foundation (SIDF), now the Sustainable Growth Fund SGF).

“The last report that has been made public is from 2013.  Where are the reports for 2014, 2015, 2016, 2017 and 2018? How can Dr. Harris and his Team Unity ministers talk about good governance, transparency and accountability in this country when they are keeping such important financial information from being scrutinized by the public.

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