Not more than three days after the CDA issued a release announcing its plan to retrench the 68, former Minister of Planning and Development under the PP administration, Dr Bhoe Tewarie blamed the PNM for the CDA’s current state of affairs. Tewarie said it was the PNM being “hard of hearing” that led to this.
But in a release Friday, sitting Minister of Planning and Development under the PNM, Camille Robinson-Regis, fired back at Tewarie saying, “The simple fact is that under Dr Tewarie CDA’s debt increased by 15 times, exploding from $6.7 million in 2010 to $118 million in 2015. In fact, under Dr Tewarie’s watch, the CDA deteriorated to the point that the current staff rationalisation programme is inevitable.”
Tewarie had insinuated that there was poor handling of the CDA’s pension fund by the PNM, which pre-dated his holding and that of the PP and which led to $88 million debt being trumpeted for the reason for staff cuts.
But Robinson-Regis cited in the release her version of the “debt situation” giving a numerical breakdown of what transpired financially from 2010 to present.
She stated in 2010 before the UNC assumed office, the CDA’s debt was $6.7 M and there was $16.9 M in savings; annual expenditure—$8.5 M; annual income—$26.7 M and personal expenditure she noted amounted to minor 32 per cent of income.
She added when PNM came into office in 2015, it was alarmed to learn that there was a debt of approximately $118 M. She said that through circumspect management of its finances in 2019, the CDA was able to clear near $30M of the $118M debt.