Letter to the Editor: There was no intention of compulsorily acquiring two plots of land at Middle and Carmichael Streets- Nandlall
My attention was drawn to a most bizarre article published in the Guyana Chronicle, Saturday, October 8, 2016, at page 8, under the caption “PPP initiated process to acquire Carmichael St lots-AG.” In that article, the following statement is attributed to the Attorney-General and Minister of Legal Affairs, Mr. Basil Williams, “The nation should know that when we [APNU+AFC] entered Government, I inherited that proposal by the PPP to acquire those said lots. And the staff I inherited, recommended those lots…So the issue of the compulsory acquisition was something inherited from the PPP. So perhaps the problem Mr Nandlall has is that he didn’t get to do the transaction.”
I wish to make it unequivocally clear, that as Attorney-General, I had no intention whatsoever of compulsorily acquiring the said two lots of land and that no step whatsoever was ever taken by the PPP/Civic Government to compulsorily acquire the said two lots of land; that all I did in relation thereto, was to make contact with the owners of the two plots of land and enquired from them, whether the lands were for sale. Both owners answered in the negative and that was the end of the transaction. I never even took a proposal to Cabinet in relation to this matter.
The article next outrageously quotes Mr. Williams, as recalling that I raised the issue in Parliament and “the project was then approved by the Ministry of Finance and Cabinet, after which it was passed and approved by the National Assembly.”I am flabbergasted! I raised no such issue in Parliament. In fact, there was no issue to be raised.
The story becomes even more sinister. The article next informs that Mr. Williams disclosed, that if the PPP had remained in office, the PPP would have paid five hundred and sixty million dollars ($560,000,000) more than the current Government for the same two plots of land. The article quotes Mr. Williams, as saying that I told him that the lots are worth six hundred million dollars ($600,000,000). Mr. Williams must be hallucinating! I had no such discussion with Mr. Williams about these plots of land. If this was not a serious matter, I would have found it hilarious.
I challenge Mr. Williams to produce one shred of evidence to support any of the contentions that he has made. I do so knowing fully well that a person who is of the iniquitous propensity to contrive and concoct such an elaborate tale is quite capable of falsifying documents to support these preposterous claims.
This is not the first time that this Attorney-General has been caught manufacturing stories to blame me and the PPP/ Civic Administration as part of his clumsy strategy to defend himself. Readers will recall that he alleged that the PPP Government had agreed to pay B.K International when he was publicly pounded for paying millions of dollars on a mere letter threatening litigation.
I challenged him then to produce evidence of this Agreement to pay. He never did. Again, the imbecilic contention is that the PPP had begun the compulsory acquisition process in respect of these two plots of land. Assuming that he is correct, this Attorney-General appears to lack a mind of his own and seems incapable of doing anything other than robotically follow PPP initiatives. Whatever it is, that the President has a serious problem on his hand, I am in no doubt.
Mohabir Anil Nandlall,