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Foreign help will be sought to track stashed out-of-State assets- Finance Minister

Finance Minister Winston Jordan

by Zena Henry

Minister of Finance Winston Jordan has noted says international assistance will be required to track State assets that might have been stashed outside of Guyana.

The A Partnership for National Unity+ Alliance for Change (APNU+AFC) government believes that under the People’s Progressive Party (PPP), the system became extremely corrupt with State finances and other assets being siphoned off.

To this end the recently installed Coalition government is adamant that it wants the country’s money back and has set up forensic audits for more than 30 agencies. To come later is the establishment of the State Asset Recovery Unit to go after assets that found their way into private hands by illegal means.

The Unit, Jordan explained, will have the mammoth task of locating the country’s assets outside of Guyana. “This unit will deal with external recovery matters and this is a big area,” he said. He opined that government “will need expert assistance to track these accounts, let’s say in Dubai and India under different names and identifications.”

Jordan said those expert agencies would be relevant to conduct the necessary traces. The Minister noted however that while discussions on this matter have commenced there is nothing concrete. The government is more concerned at this point in cleaning the local system, various government Ministers when addressing the issue of corruption at their ministries stated.

On the campaign trail, the APNU+AFC assured the masses investigations into state operations under the PPP as it became widely believed that the then government was tampering with the country’s money.

External critics had advised the government to seek assistance from investigative agencies such as Scotland Yard, the United States’ Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI) and similar agencies.

The opposition is not taking the accusations lightly. They have accused the government of blowing the corruption charge out of control to keep campaign promises and have thus embarked on a big masquerade” that suggests massive investigations to put right, wrong doings by the PPP.

PPP General Secretary Clement Rohee said earlier in the week that, “all these highly publicized actions are being taken without any just cause, any investigations, neither any involvement of the Auditor General or the relevant constitutional body nor the production of incontrovertible evidence.”

The party said that it is not interested in inclusionary governance if the government continues to not only blow up their corruption charge, but to “witch hunt” State workers who seemed sympathetic to the former administration.