Last update: 12-Dec-2013 4:50 am
Thursday, December 12, 2013
Trinidad & Tobago Guardian Online
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Lalla: Probe Alleyne’s election contracts
Independent Liberal Party (ILP) candidate for the November 4 St Joseph by-election Om Lalla says a criminal investigation should be done into the execution of infrastructure projects by the candidate for the United National Congress Ian Alleyne. Since being nominated to contest the by-election, Alleyne has been engaged in several projects to benefit constituents, including building box drains. Full page advertisements have also been printed in the media listing the projects.
Lalla, an attorney, spoke with the media during a walkabout with party leader Jack Warner at Quarry Drive, Champs Fleurs, yesterday. He said giving Alleyne to engage in such projects may amount to misbehaviour in public office by those in authority. “That may warrant a criminal investigation by the Commissioner of Police,” he added. Lalla said Alleyne did not have the legal authority to award contracts or make promises in the way he was doing.
Alleyne, he said, was creating “a serious stain on the Government” which was “giving people without authority to enter the treasury and to interfere with the governance of this country.” While Alleyne may be enthusiastic, Lalla warned: “He is treading a very dangerous course that is going to change governance in this country.”
Explaining his position, Lalla said allowing a private citizen who had no legal authority to issue contracts was “literally usurping the function of all public officials and after the election that is probably going to warrant a serious criminal investigation.” He said the Government did not have the authority to break the rules of tender process and the law. “There will be repercussions after this election,” he said, “and there may be a criminal investigation into misbehaviour in public office as to who is giving him the authority to award the contracts.”
Lalla wanted to know if Alleyne was working with the acting Commissioner of Police Stephen Williams or sanctioned by him to make promises of criminal investigations. He said that investigation should provide answers on who gave Alleyne the authority to engage in such activities. Lalla also responded to statements by Housing Minister Dr Roodal Moonilal about the award of a $10 million contract to a company called Smart Communications Ltd.
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