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Time for protest/picket

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Tue, Oct 9, 2012

EDITOR: Last Saturday, October 6, “the presenter” on a midday radio program called for a peaceful protest/picket during the next sitting of the House of Assembly this Thursday. I support the protest/picket.

We should protest/picket if any person charged with the offence of perjury dares to enter our “Honourable” House.{{more}}

We should protest those who lied to the “masses” of Vincentians by telling them they would have lost their deposits at the National Commercial Bank (NCB) if “there was a run on the bank”. [More on this in next Fridays’ edition.]

The 2003 Insurance Act at Part 1, paragraph 8 reads: (1) The Supervisor [of insurance] shall on or before the last day of June in each year or a later date specified by the Minister, prepare and submit to the Minister as soon as practicable a report containing (a) statements on the working of this act during the previous year; and (b) printed copies or summaries of the documents lodged with the Supervisor under section 38, 39, 72, 160,181 and 182.

(3) The Minister shall, as soon as practicable after the receipt of the Supervisor’s report cause a copy to be laid before the Parliament.

The Act at Part 2, paragraph 29 reads: Notwithstanding section 22, every company shall, in respect of class of insurance business being transacted, establish an insurance fund equal to its liability and contingency reserves in respect of polices in the State in that class of business as established by the revenue account of the company less the amount held in deposit with the Supervisor.

So was the law upheld? Did the Supervisor ever submit a report to the Minister? Up to 2009, when news broke about British American/Clico – NO. Was the Opposition, particularly the shadow Minister of Finance, Arnhim Ulrick Eustace, aware of the bill’s provisions? If he has, he never asked for the report in Parliament or anywhere else for that matter. In fact, it appears that until Ms Kay Bacchus-Browne took to the air on New Times (March 2011) program none of the members of the opposition were aware of the law or its provisions. It is now October; has anything been tabled in Parliament for 2012, in respect of the 2003 Act?

Where the paper showed deposit of $142m, in actuality there was $53m and in another account, paper showed $22m, but in actuality there was only $10m. So it is not just the government that failed the “masses” here; the opposition is as culpable. Vincentians could really lose millions unlike NCB because we know where the money was.

So, you ask me “Replace Arnhim Eustace with who?” I ask you “Replace the ULP with what?”

Time to protest/picket – all British American/Clico losers should join the line.

Frank E. da Silva

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