Commission of Inquiry into Antigua and Barbuda's Involvement in the Odebrecht Scandal
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The Movement is the leading voice for advancing a culture of good governance and participatory democracy as a way of building a better Antigua and Barbuda. We aim to drive a sustainable good governance agenda as an alternative to the Westminster system as administered in Antigua and Barbuda; through consciousness raising, agitation, and facilitation in a non-partisan manner. We value accountability, transparency, inclusion and participation. We encourage you to sign this petition to Governor General Sir Rodney Williams to appoint a commission of inquiry into Antigua and Barbuda’s participation in the bribery scandal of Odebrecht Organization, a global construction conglomerate.
Antigua and Barbuda was among countries named in court documents filed by the United States Government in December 2016, alleging that Odebretch and other co-conspirators paid nearly US $8 million in bribes to government officials in about a dozen countries.
The Brazilian construction giant acquired Meinl Bank Antigua Limited, exclusively to launder funds. The documents state, “in or about mid-2015, Odebrecht Employee 4 attended a meeting in Miami, Florida, with a consular official from Antigua and an intermediary to a high-level government official in Antigua in order to conceal Odebrecht’s corrupt activities.” “Odebrecht Employee 4 requested that the high-level official refrain from providing to international authorities various banking documents that would reveal illicit payments made by the Division of Structured Operations on behalf of Odebrecht, and agreed to pay US $4 million to the high-level official to refrain from sending the documents.”
The Department of Justice documents do not provide complete information about the over 100 projects across 12 countries that Odebrecht admit were tainted with bribery, nor do they name the recipients of any of the US $788 million in bribes that they admit they paid. In response to the allegations, Prime Minister Honorable Gaston Brown fired Barbuda’s Honorary Consul to Brazil Luis Franca. In April 2017, Ambassador to the UAE Casroy James abruptly resigned. Three months prior, in December, James issued a statement admitting that he had attended the meeting and received an undisclosed sum of money, but was adamant that the funds were payment for his work as an independent consultant when he was working on behalf of Global Residency and Advisory Services Limited.
The citizens and residents of Antigua and Barbuda remain steadfast that without an investigation to uncover the depth and breadth of the scheme corruption will go untethered. An inquiry will, among other things (i) reveal the person(s) involved in the bribery scheme; (ii) prescribe remedial action; (iii) confirm Antigua and Barbuda’s commitment to preventing corruption.
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