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Mottley: Bring the contract


rhondathompson, [email protected]

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OPPOSITION Leader Mia Mottley has challenged Minister of Housing and Lands Michael Lashley to produce a “construction contract” between the National Housing Corporation (NHC) and CLICO for a development at Constant, St George.She laid down the gauntlet yesterday during debate in the House of Assembly on a resolution to vest 2.76 hectares of Crown land in the NHC for housing development following a January 8, 2009 Cabinet decision.Mottley, who as chair of the Public Accounts Committee (PAC) has pledged to investigate all contracts and projects awarded by the NHC between December 2008 and August 2010, was critical of the minister for not addressing key issues raised by former NHC chairman Marilyn Rice-Bowen in a Press statement following her sacking by Lashley on July 31.One of Rice-Bowen’s major complaints was that she could not ensure there was a contract in place with the contractors, CLICO Holdings, for work on the Constant project, while another was her failure to persaude the minister to buy into the Democratic Labour Party’s 2008 election manifesto pledge to award a greater portion of NHC contracts to small contractors.“By the standard set, not only by the Democratic Labour Party manifesto, by the standard set by the substantive Prime Minister of this country and Minister of Finance, this minister has failed abysmally,” Mottley declared.Mottley reminded the House that Lashley had not approached the 572 houses promised, and after two years in office, had only just announced plans to launch the $5 per square foot lots.“I would let him slide on that; I would let him slide for only getting seven per cent of what he promised; but what I would not let him slide on is failing to be full and frank in this honourable chamber,” she said, “and seeking to give the impression that there is a finance contract in place with CLICO, and refusing to produce it to the public of Barbados.”Mottley insisted that Lashley had a duty as a minister of the Crown to provide the information to the Chamber in a manner that was consistent with the conventions, norms and the truth in the House.“Let the minister produce the construction contract between the National Housing Corporation and CLICO at Constant, St George,” Mottley said. (AB)

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