JUST over an hour after it released a statement accusing the opposition Saint Lucia Labour Party (SLP) of destabilization, sabotage and attacking the government, Opposition Leader Philip J Pierre responded saying that the United Workers Party (UWP) must be in a desperate situation.
It all went down yesterday at around noon, when the UWP released a statement in response to Pierre’s letter to Prime Minister Chastanet dated 17 September, 2018 calling on the PM to take to parliament the contract it awarded the construction company Fresh Start for EC$15.9 million to rehabilitate roads in his community.
Said the UWP statement, “In the latest attack on the government, Opposition Leader Philip J. Pierre makes reference to $15 million for Micoud Roads and a further $13M for the La Ressource Road.
“What Philip J. Pierre failed to tell the St. Lucian people is that these road projects were facilitated via a DESIGN, BUILD and FINANCE arrangement.
“This DESIGN BUILD and FINANCE arrangement is no different to the very same facility used by the St. Lucia Labour Party during their last term in office for the Banse-La Haut Road totaling $29M.
“In fact the signing ceremony to mark the commencement of that project was held on Wednesday January 7, 2015 at Banse, yet only taken to Parliament in July of that year.
“Here we see, again, another shameless example of the St. Lucia Labour Party endeavouring to sully the reputation of this government when they themselves, while in government, subscribed to and implemented the very same DESIGN, BUILD and FINANCE facility for multiple projects.”
Said Pierre: “The United Workers Party must be in a rather desperate situation. What our letter said to the prime minister was that he had awarded a contract to a firm for $15 million without tender and that contract would mean that the taxpayers of Saint Lucia would have to pay $15 million plus interest at 6.5% over a period of four years.
“All we are asking of the prime minister is for him to follow the Finance Act and bring the contract to parliament.
“That’s all we are saying. We did not question the contract. We did not question why the contract was given without tender.
“All we said was that this is a loan, according to the Finance Act, Section 39,” Pierre said.