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Chastanet Defends Deal with Radical Investment

Former Prime Minister Allen Chastanet Thursday defended his administration’s EC$7.3 million deal with Radical Investment to procure 100,000 doses of the AstraZeneca vaccine in April of this year, despite a no show of the vaccine almost six months later.

Former Prime Minister Allen Chastanet
Former Prime Minister Allen Chastanet

The deal with radical Investment, which now has the full attention of the present government and that of Barbados due to the fact that Radical Investment also involved Barbados in it, has only Saint Lucia paying monies upfront.

Radical was supposed to act as an intermediary in securing the doses for Saint Lucia and Barbados. The Bahamas was said to be involved in that deal according to Chastanet, however that country has denied any knowledge of that.

Questions abound as to whether the former administration conducted proper due diligence before signing a contract with Radical Investment and whether it knew that a private company could not have done business with AstraZeneca.

Mark Maloney
Mark Maloney

“So we always knew that that was the case, that a private company could not source directly. In this particular case I want to reiterate, Saint Lucia is not the one who went out seeking Mr. Maloney or Radical (Investment). Radical approached us indicating that they were working on purchasing a million vaccines and that they had two other countries that were participating in it. We also understood that one country would be taking the lead with Astra Zeneca directly so that basically Astra Zeneca knew what the role of Radical was going to be in this process in fact there was another entity involved,” Chastanet said.

He added that the due diligence conducted brought a number of things to light such as how and where the money was going to be transferred and what the level of accountability was going to be. He stated that “the entire process was vetted by the attorney general’s office and the procurement process was gone through within government.”

The former prime minister said he did confirm that other countries were part of the deal with Radical Investment but he was not privileged to ask details about the contract those other countries had with the company other than establishing what the price was going to be.

He made the comment when asked if he knew that Barbados’ deal with Radical Investment was to pay the company only after the doses were delivered.

According to Chastanet paying the EC$7.3 million did not seem untoward at the time.

“I was also satisfied that the contract that we had put in place would have covered Saint Lucia. I was further satisfied that Mr. Maloney who headed up Radical was not an unknown entity. As I said,{Maloney) an  established business man in Barbados, had done business in Saint Lucia and more importantly owns assets in Saint Lucia. So that if at any point things went wrong I knew that the government would have had a recourse but I am very happy to know that the faith that I had in Mr. Maloney and in Radical was well-founded and the fact that they have started the process of reimbursing Saint Lucia,” Chastanet said.

He noted that the deal with Radical Investment had to be viewed in context. He said that at the time Saint Lucia was struggling to get vaccines seeing that England could not help Saint Lucia after that country’s prime minister wrote saying just that. Neither was India able to help Saint Lucia after initially helping with thousands of doses. Further, at the time, Canada and the United States indicated they could not provide any more vaccines.

2 Comments

  1. With all due respect, Chastanet’s stupidity is as common as rain. For one thing, how can someone defend a hopeless deal? Chastanet was supposedly con. Instead of being contrite, he prefers to grandstand with pride. The man is an erratic and irresponsible narcissist. His explanation is a grotesque oversimplification of what really took place between him and Mr. Maloney. This is emblematic of a society where accountability has taken a back seat to cronyism and nepotism.

    Chastanet’s record has proven that he should NEVER be prime minister of this pristine country again. He was the business agent for Radical Investments and his cronies. No CEO or any thoughtful business person would enter such a nefarious deal. Shame on you Chastanet!

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