Debate on Tesoro corruption scandal
The Tesoro corruption scandal was being debated in Parliament when Muslimeen insurgents stormed the Red House on July 27, 1990. Former National Alliance for Reconstruction minister Joseph Toney told the commission of enquiry into the coup d'etat yesterday it was alleged that in the purchase of shares at Tesoro, certain people paid bribes to get them at a certain price. He said former PNM government minister, Johnny O'Halloran, was implicated in the matter. Toney said then national security minister, Selwyn Richardson, pursued the allegations doggedly, even going to an American court.
Tesoro eventually conceded there was improper conduct in the purchase of the shares and awarded money to the T&T government. Toney said then PNM supporters would have never wanted this scandal exposed at all. He said PNM supporters also played a part in massive resistance to the NAR government in 1990. He said late PNM government minister, Morris Marshall, was at the forefront of marches organised by the Summit of the People's Organisation, an amalgamation of trade unions and activists. He said former opposition leader, Basdeo Panday, who was expelled from the NAR government, also felt Robinson should have shared power with him.