I was really taken aback when Vice President Dr. Bharrat Jagdeo, during his last press conference, informed the nation that “some people connected to the (then) Government (A Partnership for National Unity + Alliance for Change-APNU+AFC)” have been most exploitative and illegal in their dealings.
The VP pointed out that “…if they have a contract from the Ministry of Public Works for $2 million, they get a Landcruiser for duty-free for the project…” then certain conditions kick on when the project is completed. The rule is that “…when vehicles are acquired under such duty-free terms, there are certain guidelines that apply in relation to a person/company keeping the imported item…” (that is) “When the project comes to an end, they are supposed to either…re-export it, or pay the taxes.”
This is so ‘scampish’, as we say in colloquial terms. I hope that something will be done quickly about this situation, and that the perpetrators will be held accountable, and if necessary, the vehicle/s will be confiscated.
The reason is that not only is such a practice both immoral and illegal, but we are talking about “hundreds of millions of dollars in taxes are unpaid…by these friends of the former ministers, and now Members of Parliament.”
Generally, across the world, one may not use Government purchasing authority or a Government charge card for personal acquisitions. The general rule is that when leaving Government service, one cannot remove Government property or files, and cannot even use Government copiers to make copies of files.
So, this ‘keeping the vehicle’ evil must be dealt with.