Why only Mark?

Ronald Toppin questions Government contracts to Maloney

The Opposition Barbados Labour Party (BLP) is accusing Government of a lack of transparency in the awarding of contracts to build new berths at the Bridgetown port.

Even worse, Opposition Member of Parliament for St Michael North Ronald Toppin said, was that the Freundel Stuart administration seemed to award the contracts to the same individual without putting the projects out to tender.

Toppin raised the issue this morning in response to Minister of Tourism Richard Sealy’s revelation that up to two new berths were likely to be constructed at the port following the completion of the multi-million dollar fifth berth.

The contractors for the $64 million Berth #5 – along with a berthing area for approximately 30 yachts – included the Mark Maloney-led Preconco Limited in association with CO Williams Construction and Marenco Limited.

Describing the investment as “yet another example of the raw and vulgar consolidation of wealth into the hands of a few in this country”, Toppin hinted at something sinister by the administration in awarding the contracts.

“We see the same face, the same name that is tagging this administration where it goes. The contract in this matter was awarded to a Berth Five Limited. Incidentally I didn’t hear the names of any small contractors called.

“Not one bid was invited. There was no tendering process. In fact, there was an unsolicited proposal submitted by Berth Five Limited to build this Berth 5. This is the same man, Mr Chairman, who got through with molasses tanks in the port authority . . . The same face Mr Chairman, who owns and operates to this day, a cement storage and delivery facility in the Bridgetown Port,” the BLP legislator said in a clear reference to Maloney, whose dismissal of an order by Chief Town Planner Mark Cummins for him to ‘cease and desist’ from erecting a cement base at Spring Garden, St Michael last year led to a yet unsettled lawsuit by the Town & Country Planning Department.

“One man Mr Chairman, is benefiting from all of this. What is wrong with everybody else?” asked Toppin.

He predicted that the cost of the sixth berth would be “astronomical”, and he called on Sealy to give Parliament the assurance that he would go through the tendering process.

“I want him to show this Chamber, Mr Chairman, that he has not already given the assurance to the same man and the same face that he going to be able to build Berth Six,” Toppin added, while wondering whether the Stuart administration was “paving the way for the privatization of the Barbados Port [Inc] to this very same individual, this same name and same face that is tagging this Government around” at all times.

Earlier, while leading off debate on a resolution for a $50 million Supplementary Estimates for 2016-2017, Sealy had said due to the construction of the fifth berth, which officially opened last April, the island had experienced increases in home porting and transshipment business, as well as a rise in cruise visitor arrivals.

“That is exactly what we would like to see develop more,” Sealy said, adding that there was a need to separate cargo and pleasure boats, and to increase the capacity for the cargo vessels as economic activities continued to increase.

In the 2016/2017 financial year about 90,000 twenty-foot equivalent units were imported into Barbados, compared to the 71,000 in financial year 2012/2013, and Sealy attributed it mainly the construction of Berth #5.

9 Responses to Why only Mark?

  1. Sheldine Dyall
    Sheldine Dyall February 28, 2017 at 11:54 pm

    Barbados got 2 business GURU

    Reply
  2. Greengiant March 1, 2017 at 1:01 am

    Unfortunately for your argument Ronald, Preconco, C. O Williams and Marenco have the experience, capacity and capability to handle marine works. The other company with proven ability will be the JADA group. Since they are all local companies who over the years have been engaged in overseas projects bringing foreign exchange to this country, with Maloney being the major investor bringing in construction based foreign exchange. What is so fundamentally wrong with this group of contractors being awarded this project? Similar to the Simpson Oil sale, if the port is sold to Maloney what is wrong with that? These are all local companies, maybe if the BLP administration had placed the telecommunication lines in the hands of a reopened BARTELL we would have been benefitting from such a deal with flow / lime less dominant. Even your party’s joint venture agreements were scandalous. Bulkeley Meadows and Coverley with South Park and Del Sol are prime examples, so bring solutions for the future or zip it up Topping. There is and will be no fatted Calf for you colleagues. So invest what you already have, employ people and for once make a real contribution as no more debate and long talk don’t cut it anymore.

    Reply
  3. Ernesta Catlyn March 1, 2017 at 5:56 am

    I think there might be some cause for concern. I am closely affiliated with business persons with strong leanings towards the DLP and they too have the same concerns as Mr Toppin. Word reaching us is that there are to be two Desal Plants built – one in the South and the other in the North. Again there was no tendering process – direct negotiation. One to be done by Innotech and the other by Jada. You cannot concentrate the wealth of a country into the hands of a few. It is morally, psychologically, economically and socially wrong. A few months ago when Maloney was not getting his way he made some veiled threat about ‘talking’; I want to hear what he has to say.

    Reply
  4. Harry March 1, 2017 at 7:01 am

    Ask also if it is true that the Port has decided that in future it will lease the equipment it needs for its operations rather than buying, and if it is also true that the same “gentleman” and a certain Govt Minister are the owners of the Company from whom the equipment will leased.

    Reply
  5. hcalndre March 1, 2017 at 9:07 am

    Is it law that all contributions and donations that the piliticians and the parties receive are to be reported to BRA? The MOF goes after every one else once money is involve but he is not getting around to that, only then the people of barbados would know who the big donors are and who get the paybacks.

    Reply
  6. Alex Alleyne March 1, 2017 at 10:38 am

    BECAUSE HE IS “BAJAN”. You will be happy if MASSA had most of the action ??????.

    Reply
  7. Greengiant March 1, 2017 at 1:23 pm

    The last thing we need is to be spreading around work for the sake of sharing it. Then the contractors don’t have the capacity to deliver the work properly. This happened with several projects under the BLP with even a former member of parliament, a prominent waste hauler and a popular radio announcer benefitting from building contracts several of which were handed to them as well. So my point is still the same, they both share a similar track record and for this reason we need a new party.

    On the point of passing legislation, these are the same lawyers who have the legal system in bondage so the only thing they will get to pass often in parliament is water.

    Reply
  8. jrsmith March 1, 2017 at 4:11 pm

    Well no surprise , For some time now the game was being played out in Barbados, so all welcome to the (Political Corporate corruption) full blown on the island of barbados…………

    Reply
  9. Sunshine Sunny Shine March 2, 2017 at 4:03 am

    Ronald Toppin you are such a hypocrite. Did not your administration practice the same thing? Are the two political parties not in the habit of scratch ma back politics?

    Reply

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