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PNP alarmed at report of unauthorised works being done on behalf of JLP's Portland Eastern candidate

Julian Robinson
 
The Opposition People's National Party (PNP) has raised alarm at a report from the Office of the Political Ombudsman that a contractor has been conducting unauthorised infrastructural projects in the Portland Eastern constituency as a contribution to Ann Marie Vaz's campaign.
 
Political Ombudsman Donna Parchment Brown says the projects did not receive any permit or contract from the municipal corporation, the Tourism Product Development Company (TPDCo) or the National Works Agency.
 
PNP General Secretary Julian Robinson said he is in agreement with the Political Ombudsman for a halt to the projects since they are in breach of the political code of conduct. 
 
"We obviously want the roads to be fixed, we want infrastructure to be put in. All of these things are beneficial to residents. But it can't operate in a way where private contractors without any authority from any government agency undertake works on public roads. Who supervises the work to ensure that the work is done of a particular quality?" he asserted. 
 
Mr. Robinson urged anti-corruption agencies, such as the Integrity Commission and Auditor General to probe the matter. 
 
"Are these contractors recipients of government projects? Were they working on other government projects before and were asked to divert from government projects to complete in Portland? Were the resources from other government projects being used to complete these quote-on-quote private works? Those are things that need to be investigated," he suggested.  
 
The Political Ombudsman has called for Mrs. Vaz to instruct her campaign team and contributors to cease and desist from the unauthorised works on public facilities as they breach the Agreement and Declaration on Political Conduct.
 
The Jamaica Labour Party (JLP) has however said it is at a loss to the concerns raised by the Political Ombudsman.
 
In an interview with RJR News Wednesday night, Matthew Samuda, Chairman of the JLP's Public Relations Committee, reiterated that State funds are not being used for the projects. He said Ombudsman's concerns are unwarranted. 
 


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