UNANSWERED OPPOSITION QUESTIONS TO THE HOUSE OF ASSEMBLY

Feb 27, 2023

TABLED DECEMBER 8TH 2021

  1. Will the Honourable Minister advise this Honourable House what is the rationale for discontinuing the Public-Private Partnership on the packing houses, feed mill and abattoir?

    TABLED SEPTEMBER 28th, 2022

  2. Has the Public Procurement Board been appointed as required by the Public Procurement Act (PPA)? Who are its members? Is it reviewing all bid contracts over $250,000 as required by law?
  3. Has the Procurement Review Tribunal been established as required by the

PPA? Who are its members?

  1. Is every government agency and state-owned enterprise publishing the summary details of contracts awarded consistent with the requirements of the PPA? Which specific agencies are compliant? Which agencies are not compliant?
  2. What is the status of the pilot project for the roll-out of the Freedom of Information Act (FOIA) announced in November 2021? What is the specific roll out dates for each of the agencies within the pilot project? What is the timeline for the roll out of the FOIA for all remaining public sector agencies and state own enterprises?

 

  1. What is the scope of works for Rothschilds & Co in their advisory capacity? What is the value and duration of the contract?
  2. Will the government confirm that the provisions of the Debt Management Act were followed with the announced $20 million loan to the Ministry of Housing? Were the proceeds of the loan deposited in the Consolidated Fund as required by the Act? Was the process to select the lender done through a competitive bidding process? Who has ultimate responsibility for repayment of the loan? What are the fees, charges and interest rates associated with the facility? Would the government lay the agreement in the House of Assembly?
  3. When will the government ensure that the now past due reports from the Fiscal Responsibility Council be provided to Parliament and published as required by the Fiscal Responsibility Act?
  4. Will the government explain to Parliament why it decided to break the law by providing a budget with a target deficit that is outside the fiscal objectives the government set in its own Fiscal Strategy Report 2021, knowing that the Fiscal Responsibility Act expressly requires the government to produce a budget consistent with the deficit targets established in the annual fiscal strategy report?

10.Will the government explain to Parliament why it has broken the law and implemented the elimination of duty on yachts purchased and operated by wealthy people outside of the required Parliamentary process? Does the government not recognize that its excuse claiming that this unauthorized tax cut is facilitated by the “Remission” clause makes no sense as such provision is not applicable?

 

11.Will the government provide an explanation as to whether BPL is using its operational revenue to cover the increased fuel cost to the company? If so, will the government indicate how this expenditure is to be covered and if the government will be required to provide a taxpayer funded subsidy to BPL to cover any element of the fuel expenditure?

12.What are the terms of engagement for the consulting firm McKinsey & Company? What procurement process was used to engage this firm? How many bids were received? What is the value of the contract and how much has been spent to date?

13.What are the terms for the contract or contracts for the development of the Pinecrest Subdivision in southern New Providence? What procurement method was used for these contracts and how many bids were received? What is the value of the contract or contracts? How much has been paid out to date?

14.The Prime Minister in social media has indicated that the government is subsidizing BPL to avoid an increase in costs to customers? When was this policy formally communicated to the Bahamian people? What is the value of the subsidy? How much has been paid out? If the subsidies are to cover the increased cost of fuel, how does this align with the law that requires BPL to adjust the surcharge to meet its fuel obligations? Is the government in breach of the related regulations?

15.Will the government provide the annualized additional incremental costs associated with the labor agreements it has completed since coming to office? Will the government indicate if it aligns with relevant related budgetary allocations for the current fiscal year? Will the government explain how the projected costs related to these labor agreements aligns with the reduction in public sector staff related costs projected over the medium term in its Fiscal Strategy Report 2021.

16.Can the Minister with responsibility for Housing confirm the purpose why Bahamians were evicted from the domes in Abaco?

17.Can the Minister responsible for Housing advise this Honorable House why the Member of Parliament for South Abaco seemed blind sided with the decision to demolish the domes/ Did her Ministry advise the MP for South Abaco of the date and time when the domes would be demolished?

18.Can the Minister for Housing confirm if the purpose of removing these domes is to make space for a new housing development and if that is the case, can the Minister confirm if the bid to construct these homes have gone out to tender?

19.Can the Minister responsible for Transport confirm the exact amount of Taxi Plates given out or distributed since the PLP came to power?

20.Will the Prime minister and Minister of Finance table in this Honorable House the list of individuals and companies who have been awarded government contracts since the PLP came to office and considering that his government is in violation of the Public Procurement Act?

21.Will the Prime Minister and Minister of Finance advise this Honorable House why his government continues to break the law in relation to the Public Procurement Act?

TABLED OCTOBER 5th, 2022

22.When will the Government disclose the amounts that were paid out to the Financial Secretary and others to settle cases or matters related to administrative leave and redeployment?

23.When will the Government pay the senior civil servants who they have sent on administrative leave and were found to have done nothing wrong, who were redeployed out of their positions, and who were stripped from their legal posts and lawful secondments the same way they have settled matters for the Financial Secretary and others?

24.When will senior civils servants on administrative leave return to work?

25.When will senior civil servants who were stripped of their duties be given work in line with their positions?

26.In a reported response to the Tribune (October 4th, 2022), the Minister of Foreign Affairs and Public Service suggested that the senior civil servants were stripped of their portfolio, redeployed, and sent on administrative leave because they had openly defied lawful orders and put obstacles in the way of the Davis Administration. When will the government provide evidence that these officers were afforded the opportunity to defend against such charges as required under General Orders? When will the government provide evidence that these officers were given verbal and written warnings by their immediate supervisors as it is required under General Orders? Is the minister saying that it is now illegal for civil servants to say that they do not and will not support the Government of the day?

27.The Davis Administration has set a new precedent that any civil servant who has been placed on administrative leave or redeployed should be compensated beyond their normal salaries and emoluments. What measure did the government use to determine the amounts to be paid to those civil servants that are in this category?

28.Will the Honourable Minister advise this Honorable House if it is true that had Government not delay, the cost paid by Bahamians would have been less than they are now as stated by the Chairman of Bahamas Power and Light (BPL)?

29.Will the Honourable Minister advise this Honourable House why has the government failed to ensure the 11.5 cents continued to be locked in as stated by the former Chief Executive of BPL?

30.Will the Honorable Minister advise the Honorable House as to why the Government has not removed Value Added Tax (VAT) off the fuel purchased by Bahamas Power and Light (BPL) and passed on to the consumer?

NOTICE OF QUESTIONS

QUESTIONS DISCUSSED BY THE PUBLIC ACCOUNTS COMMITTEE

  1. Will the Government and Prime Minister Davis provide the following documents from the Ministry of Finance and the Central Bank: MOU on the SDRs $232 million; The amount drawn Down on; and the purpose for which the amounts were used?
  2. Will the Honorable Minister provide the breakdown of BPL’s $150 million in arrears?
  3. Will the Honorable Minister provide the record of the bidding process to select the driving certification company with the Ministry of Transport and secure the contract and/or MOU?
  4. Will the Government provide all expenses, receipts and donations toward the trip to Bermuda that was made by Prime Minister Davis and delegation to attend the convention of the Progressive Labour Party?

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