Walwyn’s Professional Integrity Under Question

BVI Platinum News | 18 Comments
October 10, 2018 8:38 am AST
Photo Credit: BVI Platinum
The Auditor General (AG), Sonia Webster has recommended that individuals responsible for the over costing and loss of economies incurred on the Elmore Stoutt High School Perimeter Wall Project be made accountable.

This, among other recommendations in the Special Audit Report into the project has attracted the ire of Minister of Education and Culture, Hon. Myron Walwyn, who made the report public on Tuesday, October 9, saying that it calls his professional integrity into question.

The AG has called for the Public Works Department to do an assessment and provide the completion cost of the project, in addition to recommending that a single contractor complete the remaining works.

Additionally, “Contractors who received full payment without completion of the works should be required to complete or be held ineligible for further government works,” the report stated.

In highlighting his dissatisfaction with several aspects of the Special Report, Minister Walwyn related that while his Ministry had responded to concerns in the draft report, and provided justification and explanation of the discrepancies that were noted, these were not taken into account in the preparation of the final report.

Instead, he lamented that the final report is basically a duplicate of the draft. He dubbed this as “disrespectful” to disregard the comments provided by the officers of his Ministry, saying that the AG’s Office’s functioning should not be an “adversarial process.”

“These concerns are in no way personal,” he stated, “It is to protect the professional integrity of myself and my colleagues who I hold in the highest professional esteem.”

He went on to say that at no point of the audit process was “the independent project manager, the accounting officer, the permanent secretary or the assistant secretary” called to the project site to explain the changes in the project—plan, cost or otherwise.

“Something is very wrong,” he stated, adding that, "I will be fine however the dice rolls.”

However, he is concerned about the impact of this report on the officers attached to his Ministry.

In justifying the increased cost of the project—a topic of controversy—which received an approved budget of $828,004.10 but to date has incurred a cost of $914,971—a figure provided by Hon. Walwyn—the Minister stated that it was a result of technicalities in the execution of the project.

He related that the initial estimate was given with the view of the project being completed by one contractor; however, the wall was divided into 22 feet segments and allocated to different contractors to get it done faster, which attracted an increase in cost as over 80 contractors were used.

Additionally, Minister Walwyn divulged that due to a difference in the slope of the land on which the school stands and the surrounding boundaries, the height of the wall had to be increased from the initial eight feet.
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18 Comments
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Guardian
What start wrong will end wrong if it's not nip in the bud.
Like · · 1w
1 Like
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Road Runner
Sonia Webster please stand your ground and continue the good work. If senior Gov. officials are criticizing you,they are likely scared of where this might lead - you're doing a great job!!!!
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3 Likes
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Sassy
But how could a block wall cost 914k anyway, this should never have been approved, this is madness, not even an all concrete wall would cost that much, this money could build a small school for Christ sake, come on people, white color crime, lock them up.
Like · · 1w
2 Likes
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Thoughful Sailor
80 contractors are quicker than one good one? And, none of these 80 souls noticed that the wall had to be increased in height? Neither did anyone else? Is that called competent?
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Just Woke...
This wall plus the hate... U in hot water my brother . Sad.. Hope they audit the others as a matter of fairness 7.2 millions and the 40 milliins... Aint looking good for you Myron. I like you but I have to be honest. Aint looking good for you.
Like · · 1w
9 Likes
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want2kno
Sadly, the "Minister" is unhappy with the report that didn't go his way, and like President Trump, has gone on the attack. The spotlight on his disingenuous approach to spending government funds, has been brighter than expected. He has been part and parcel of the many projects with serious cost overruns, as a member of Cabinet. He can't get away from it. Mr. Minister, why are you trying to fool us yet again? There's NO way, a 1,532 foot wall can cost that much.....stop trying to bully the Auditor General and man up to what you have done....
Like · · 1w
5 Likes
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Jaigon
If my memory serves me right, I think it was former governor John Duncan who called for an audit into this wall. So my question is, how come Myron made this report public, was it within his realms to make this report public or was it the present governor who was supposed to make it public? Am just asking because am not sure.
Like · · 2w
11 Likes
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Luvz
Wait a minute! Did I just read correctly - the million dollar unfinished wall had some 80 contractors. Really? This has to be an error. 80 contractors to do what?
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6 Likes
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Hmmm
They keep picking on Myron. There are other projects that over run by Millions . Not a word. When people like you they blow up the little wrong you do and when they like you they try to hide the big wrong u do.. We can't forget they crucified all the great prophets.
Like · · 2w
2 Likes
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Facts
The fact is the Ministry spent $914k for a wall that is valued at $899k based on the reputable appraisal of BCQS. This is a mere 15k overage if we want to be so technical. Public works used the measurements of a normal wall when in fact this wall was four times more the size of a normal wall. Had the Auditor general, Public Works and their teams done their jobs properly they won't be producing a half done report.
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Heh Heh
Finally he is being called out on his accountability and he bawling like a baby.
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33 Likes
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WOW
This made is not honest
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6 Likes
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Road Runner
I smell a Rat......... I do hope that full accountability is coming to all aspects of government spending, which has been sadly lacking over the years.
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27 Likes
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VI 2 De Bone
80 contractors?
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17 Likes
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*Hmm
That's the thing that stood out for me when I read the article....80 bloody contractors? WHAT?!? That got to be typo and should be 8 which still a lot because I can't comprehend that 80 no sah. Is no wonder this place the way it is because they busy shelling out we tax $$ to full up any & everybody pocket. This a prime example.
Like · 2w
7 Likes
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None Sense
hmmmmmmm
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The Hooded Claw
I have heard political parties claim that they want to help the "little man". This tells me that Honorable Walwyn is the TRUTH. I wish for someone to explain to me how sharing the pie so that everyone gets a slice is bad in oppose to the ...... and ...... getting all! I will wait!
Like · 1w
4 Likes
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Inquiry
What is the definition of a "contractor" in our BVI??
Like · 1w
0 Likes
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