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Fri 27th Jul 2018

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Warrant Officer Ivan O’Neal calls for resignation of PM Gonsalves and Leader of the Opposition Friday for flouting Section 76 of the SVG 1979 Constitution

Research by Warrant Officer Ivan O’Neal BSc (hons), MSc, MBA and Leader of SVG Green Party has revealed that PM Gonsalves and Leader of the Opposition Friday have both been flouting Section 76 of the SVG 1979 Constitution by blatantly and knowingly not providing Public Accounts Committee reports.

There has not been one SVG House of Assembly Public Accounts Committee report between 2001 and 2018. The Public Accounts Committee reports are mandated under Section 76 of the SVG 1979 Constitution.

The Public Accounts Committee is required to consider the public accounts in conjunction with the report of the SVG 1979 constitutionally-appointed Director of Audit’s reports, and in particular, report to the SVG House of Assembly with respect to:

(a) In the case of any excess or unauthorised expenditure of public funds, the reason for such expenditure and measures it considers necessary in order to ensure that public funds are properly spent.
(b) And such other duties relating to the public accounts as the House of Assembly may from time to time direct.

According to Warrant Officer Ivan O’Neal, the need for the Public Accounts Committee is critical and it makes sure that public funds are spent correctly. No one is above the law and the Public Accounts Committee is the public’s watch-dog, to safeguard accountability and transparency in using public funds, and to make sure the spending is in accordance with the law.

According to Ivan O’Neal, SVG has a very serious constitutional problem, in that, the Public Accounts Committee has not been functioning for over 17 years, because neither the ULP regime nor the NDP opposition have any members of Parliament that are university graduates in Accounting and Finance and Economics and are competent enough to write a professional Public Accounts Committee report.

They have no one within their teams with the competence to analyse public spending adequately and produce a Public Accounts Committee report for the SVG House of Assembly, and by extension, for the indigenous people of SVG.

Warrant Officer Ivan O’Neal BSc (hons), MSc, MBA, who has a BSc (hons) degree in Accounting and Finance and Economics from Brookes University, Oxford, England, believes that there has to be a competent and highly qualified Public Accounts Committee Chairman to make sure public funds are spent legally and to revive the SVG stagnant economy into a going concern. As such, Gonsalves and Friday must resign.

Warrant Officer Ivan O’Neal BSc (hons), MSc, MBA very strongly contends that the non-operation of the Public Accounts Committee is totally unacceptable, and emergency measures should have been put in place by the ULP regime and the NDP opposition to bring into Parliament at least one Senator who has the necessary university qualifications and ability to analyse public expenditure to provide high-quality Public Accounts Committee reports for Parliament and the people of SVG.

Gonsalves and Friday have shown that when the Opposition is weak and Government is weak the SVG economy is weak. SVG needs a Public Accounts Committee now.

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