The legal fees paid to Central Bank attorneys were never meant to be made public.
Informed sources told the Express that the information was requested by Finance Minister Larry Howai following the national budget and was provided only under the cover of confidentiality.
The Express was told that the Central Bank hierarchy was alarmed when Attorney General Anand Ramlogan recently revealed the fees paid to several attorneys in Parliament during his contribution in the Senate to the budget debate.
Ramlogan listed the amounts paid to the top seven fee-earners for the period 2007 to 2012 under then Central Bank governor Ewart Williams.
Ramlogan said they were Reginald Armour who received $17 million; Araujo Law and attorney Ian Benjamin- $9.3 million; Lydia Mendonca and Co-$4.2 million; Pollonais, Blanc, de la Bastide and Jacelon-$3.4 million; Sherry-Ann Bachew-Rudd-$2.5 million and Mair and Company-$1 million.
Since the disclosure, Armour, Araujo and Benjamin have denied that those were the fees earned.
Armour, in a media statement last week, said the fees were exaggerated by four times and has written to the vice president of the Senate for a correction of the Hansard.
Ramlogan's disclosure of the fees came at a time when the Ministry of Finance was sorting through the firing and hiring of new counsel for the CL Financial/HCU Commission of Enquiry.
The Express was told that on Monday night, another request was sent by the Ministry of Finance to the Central Bank to ascertain fees paid by Williams for the past ten years.
This request was denied after the initial confidential information was revealed in Parliament, sources said on Tuesday.
"The Central Bank is wary of the questions being raised in the public domain by these issues. The bank operates outside of any political gamesmanship and it will not be used to score political points. Furthermore, there's context to fees paid by the bank which was clearly absent in the revelations made in Parliament," a source told the Express.
Central Bank Governor Jwala Rambarran on Tuesday would not comment on the matter and also dismissed reports that the present team of Central Bank attorneys was to be replaced as well.
He said the present team, headed by Bankim Thanki QC and Benjamin, was in for the long haul for the duration of the Enquiry. Howai did not respond to questions on the issue submitted by the Express earlier this week.