By Caribbean News Global contributor
PROVIDENCIALES, TCI – The British Governor of Turks and Caicos Nigel Dakin, has denied reports that the UK government through its Foreign, Commonwealth and Development Office (FCDO) are attempting an intervention in the finances of the Turks and Caicos Islands government. His response was directed to local news source Magnetic Media after Caribbean News Global (CNG) broke the story about the plans by the (FCDO).
The Governor attempted to labelled CNG a “fake news site” struggled unsuccessfully to discredit the facts known [to CNG] regarding positioning of the FCDO to conduct such an operation. The Governor told Magnetic Media: “These are non-attributable quotes, to an unnamed journalist, circulated by an unknown social media platform, purporting to be a Caribbean news outlet, that no one has heard of. As a result, the story should be dismissed as an example of very worst in social media fake news – if poorly executed. “My statement of the 15 September, that includes a section on the economy, is the UK’s position.”
CNG will not slap the Turks and Caicos Governor with the same insults as he has shown [CNG], suffice to say, that none of the actions of Governors in TCI are without suspicion on the part of the TCI public, including Governor Dakin.
The CNG articles were largely based on that statement which carried very coded language aimed at sensitizing the public of the keen interest the UK now has in TCI’s finances, given the deteriorating state of the finances of the country, and the massive contingent liabilities confronting the UK, confirmed by impeccably placed sources at various levels in the Turks and Caicos government and the UK.
Governor Dakin went on to label as false the assertion that the UK is seeking a 20 percent reduction in civil service. His comment to Magnetic Media reads: “No such conversation has taken place”. However, the ministry of finance led by failed finance minister Sharlene Cartwright Robinson who Governor Dakin seems to prop-up has already instituted some austerity measures [herself], through the ministry of finance, with actions toward statutory boards such as a request to reduce expenditure by some 20 percent. And while Governor Dakin refuses to admit that plans are being drawn up to cut expenditure in the UK, our sources say otherwise.
Meantime, Governor Dakin’s comments confirmed the intervention by the UK, even if his bosses are categorizing the relationship as “working with Cartwright Robinson”. In a classic example of doublespeak, famously known to be the order of the day amongst Governor Dakin comments read out: “Should the TCI government wish to take on well-sourced and competitive debt the UK will, I’m sure, be supportive.” Dakin immediately contradicts himself in the statement by saying, “That support is necessary because the UK takes on contingent liability for all Overseas Territories debts”. He further remarked, “But that is where the conversation presently rests with the UK – the premier as minister of finance signalling she is looking for the best deal she can secure, and the UK waiting to hear what the governments approach to debt will be”.
As CNG previously reported and confirmed by Governor Dakin, the imposition of the chief financial officer (CFO) is not the desired path of the British government however a financial adviser/debt advisor is being sought. Further, Governor Dakin claimed that a CFO was instituted because of the rampant corruption of the past is also untrue.
“… it is also important to put on record – categorically – that there is no truth whatsoever that the UK has decided to ‘intervene in TCI’s finances’ nor any suggestion a CFO is needed. It was needed in the past because of previous rampant corruption.”
On Tuesday, May 8, 2012, at 9.24 am the British government issued a statement, regarding the CFO:
“The post-election powers for the Chief Financial Officer (CFO), to ensure ongoing financial stability following elections in TCI, were unveiled in new draft Bill by His Excellency the Governor today, Tuesday 8 May 2012.
“The continuation of the CFO after the election is in accordance with an essential condition set by the UK government as part of the agreement for the provision of the UK’s $260 million loan guarantee. Without the guarantee, it would not have been possible for TCIG to access the funding it needed to function, and to provide public services. The agreement allows for the CFO to be retained for as long as any UK loan guarantee is in force, currently up to 2016, and for the UK to nominate the person who will hold the office of CFO. Retaining sufficient controls over TCI public money was first set out on 9 December 2010, when ministers Bellingham and Duncan provided the British parliament with a Written Ministerial Statement (WMS), also published in the TCI. It is also a feature of the Turks and Caicos Islands Constitution Order 2011”.
For Governor Dakin to make new revelations that ostensibly claim that the CFO was installed “because of previous rampant corruption”, is not only false but newsworthy, if the real intent for a CFO was never disclosed to the public in 2012, and was seemingly calculated to mislead the people of the Turks and Caicos Islands over its true intent.
Furthermore, of grave concern now is the apparent missing financial statements for August and September 2020, which could confirm the worst possible news that the TCI finances have completely collapsed under Cartwright-Robinson’s handling of the ministry of finance. Governor Dakin said nothing in his release to address this fact.
Unfortunately, Governor Dakin has had to prop-up Cartwright-Robinson on numerous occasions. Sources close to him report that he is beginning to become worn-out over the constant need to come to her rescue repeatedly. This propping-up does not come gracious, nonetheless, with Cartwright-Robinson giving cart-blanche support for the Governor’s approach to policing.