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Marshall calls for answers

marciadottin, [email protected]

Marshall calls for answers

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DEPUTY OPPOSITION Leader, Dale Marshall, wants Acting Prime Minister, Freundel Stuart to explain why Marilyn Rice-Bowen, was fired as chairman of the National Housing Corporation (NHC), while Minister of Housing, Michael Lashley was not held accountable for his conduct.Rice-Bowen told a Press Conference yesterday that Lashley had bypassed the NHC board on a number of NHC projects. Marshall stated: “ . . .  the Barbados Labour Party is calling on the Acting Prime Minister, Freundel Stuart to explain to the country why the Cabinet chose to revoke Mrs Rice-Bowen’s appointment rather than hold Minister of Housing, Michael Lashley accountable for his conduct.”He said that Rice-Bowen “made it clear that in spite of all efforts to correct this impossible situation the Minister continued with his behaviour”.Marshall stated: “As a former chairman of the NHC and a former Attorney General, I can confirm that her understanding of the required standards of governance of the corporation is absolutely correct.
Confirmation“She also confirmed what the Barbados Labour Party has been saying for some time that the Minister is failing to respond to the urgent needs of small contractors.“Barbadians will know that two of the largest NHC projects, Coverley and Country Road are being done by the same group of companies.”
No contractAdding that “Barbadians must also be appalled that there is no contract in place for the housing project at Constant between the contractors CLICO and the NHC,” Marshall asked: “What is so special about CLICO that the former chairman of the board could not get them to sign a contract to protect the interests of the NHC?” He also said, “In spite of all the controversy surrounding the affairs of CLICO the Government has failed to protect, not only the policyholders, but now the taxpayers.”Marshall also commended Rice-Bowen, whom he noted was a long standing member of the Democratic Labour Party, for her “courage and public spiritedness in holding fast to her principles and standing up for what is legally and morally right”, adding that “unfortunately her colleagues have chosen yet again to make her the sacrificial lamb”.Opposition Leader, Mia Mottley, will speak on this issue at a meeting this evening  at Sharon Primary School. (MB/PR)