Posted by: nastylittletruths | December 14, 2010

Did Dookeran Lie?

This is a pressing question that must be answered…

In an address to Parliament on Wednesday November 24th, while piloting the The Finance (No.2) Bill 2010, Winston Dookeran explicitly stated that TT$2.4b was paid out to contractors between June and October this year also citing that the Ministry of Housing were also paying contractors.

Subsequent to that astounding news – believe me, if $2.4b was paid into this economy everyone would have felt it – both the Opposition Leader and the President of the Contractors Association have questioned who exactly were the beneficiaries of this windfall? If no one is claiming receipt of outstanding monies, who then is lying? The contractors, or the Minister?

Being owed money by GORTT, I didn’t get paid… And to add insult to injury, the Minister is asking for proof? WTF? What proof? I am contracted to do a job, a project manager is contracted to verify work done, certified payment claims are forwarded to the client and now I have to provide proof? What exactly is the Dooks asking for? Proof that there wasn’t any ‘bobol’ in the contract? And that is the crux of the matter. All of us are considered thieves because we had the temerity to bid and negotiate a contract with a PNM government…

So what were we supposed to do? Hold on to our ideals while every Chinese contractor and their distant cousins (the French) were getting all the work? The Chinese brought all their labour and most of their cheap shoddy materials into this country. At least the French still spread some work to the local guys. So who got paid this $2.4b? The French and Chinese? Vinci, Bouygues, China Jiangsu, China State, China Railway, Ningbo, Beijing Liujian? And if they did, then why?

The other rumour coming out of the mill is that only Jack Warner’s big contractors working on PURE are being paid, but not saying anything to Mikey Joseph. The ‘fact’ behind the rumour is that Jack*** is greasing the wheel so he can get what he wants out of the contractors – negotiated contracts without tendering – and the contractors are getting sweetheart deals. Another rumour is that all of a sudden Emile Elias is quiet. Why? Only because he has this prime minister’s ear (like he had the last one for a period in time) or because he was paid too?

Dookeran has to answer. He has put people like myself in a position where we are deemed to be making excuses for not settling our debts. Imagine if one of them thinks that I am robbing them their hard-earned money with Christmas coming up and sends a gunman to ‘take care of me’? Dooks, you have endangered our lives and I repeat my call when you lost the elections in 2007 – you have got to go. You are just another Basdeo Panday (who isn’t) who surrounds himself with the brown-nosers telling him that the scent is great…

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