On Thursday February 14, Dr. Douglas met with reporters of Gulf News, a popular media house in the Middle East, to give a media update on the ongoing issues in the St. Kitts and Nevis Citizenship by Investment Program.
Dr. Douglas informed the media that it was important that the Program is significant for the future economic fortunes of not only St. Kitts and Nevis but several countries in the Caribbean region which are in competition with other jurisdictions especially in the European Union, Asia, Africa and the Americas including Canada and the USA.
He further emphasized the importance of maintaining the highest quality and standards for the St. Kitts-Nevis and Caribbean programs. And it’s the Government’s duty, foremost. to regulate the program to ensure that these standards are maintained.
Douglas, in speaking with journalist Mazaher Farooqui of Gulf News, noted that it was alarming that a St. Kitts-Nevis delegation comprising Vincent Byron the Attorney General(AG), Premier Mark Brantley the Minister of Foreign Affairs, and Les Khan the Chief Executive Officer(CEO) of the Citizenship Investment Unit(CIU) in the Office of the Prime Minister, visited the UAE recently, and glossed over the fact that a number of unscrupulous persons are engaged in activities of fraud, forgery, underselling, and undermining of the St. Kitts-Nevis program. The government has reasoned that because the number of citizenships granted under such criminal and unsavoury circumstances is small when compared to the 16000 economic citizenships granted under the program to date, the violations should be ignored.
Douglas who is also Leader of the St. Kitts-Nevis Labour Party (SKNLP) assured the Middle East media that the SKNLP does not support the views expressed by Les Khan (CEO of the Citizenship by Investment Unit) and Vincent Byron, the St. Kitts-Nevis Attorney General.
“We again emphasise that the Government must give priority to reporting for immediate collaborative investigation of the alleged crimes of forgery and fraud to the appropriate agency of the National Security apparatus here in the UAE and to the White Collar Crime Unit of the Royal St Kitts and Nevis Police Force at home,” Douglas said.
The SKNLP Leader further called for the immediate temporary suspension of the processing of applications for St. Kitts-Nevis Economic Citizenships BY THE ACCUSED INTERNATIONAL MARKETING AGENTS (IMAs). He emphasised that a new Labour (SKNLP) Administration would exercise its powers and take definitive action against all proven violators in accordance with the existing Citizenship Laws and Regulations of St. Kitts-Nevis. This may involve prosecution of IMA violators at home or abroad, and temporary or permanent withdrawal of the use of the St. Kitts-Nevis Passports by citizens implicated in related illegalities. Douglas assured that, consistent with the principles of natural justice, the new administration will engage in determining whether citizens were duped or knowingly conspired with their IMAs, and will allow them to come forward to prove such declarations.
Principled action is required to defend, maintain and uphold the value, pride and integrity of the St. Kitts-Nevis Citizenship, howsoever obtained. The Timothy Harris Unity Government(THUG) must stop its political grandstanding and forthwith take any and all actions to defend our citizenship.
Hon Dr Denzil L Douglas
Leader of the Parliamentary Opposition(2015- Present)