PNM Senator Fitzgerald Hinds claimed yesterday that some state sector functionaries were practicing racism, taking the position it is "we time now".
Hinds singled out the Agricultural Development Bank (ADB) as one of the companies.
"The chairman of the Board, Rudy Maharaj, is involved in operational matters of the bank, interviewing staff alone, receiving resumes alone, shortlisting people for interview, dictating things to human resource manager and loans manager about loans in the ADB. That cannot be right!" Hinds stated.
Hinds said it was reported to him that since Maharaj took over the chairmanship of the ADB, "35 people have been employed, all of one race".
"To make matters worse," Hinds said, there was excessive expenditure at the company--independence decorations for 2012 cost the company $400,000 when they had budgeted $40,000.
"All the printing for the Bank is done by a company owned by the chairman...via other companies. One such company is called Top Design...I have the directors' names here...These are the things I want you (Attorney General Anand Ramlogan) to investigate. I am prepared to pass the information on to you."
Hinds said Top Design got $35,000 for a family day that was cancelled.
He said the new ADB board was harrassing people.
"You may not know it Ministers, but some of your functionaries in the state sector are telling people who they meet there 'is we time now', PNM people, once yuh African. They are doing that!" Hinds claimed as some Government Ministers dared him to call names, while others cautioned him against raising the issue of race.
"You could say what you want. But it has been reported to me that they are being told (that) by the chairman of the Board at the ADB, tormenting them, running them away. Board members Winston Rudder, Lesley Ann Williams and Nivan Maharaj, an attorney at law, claim that they could no longer take the mismanagement and rubbish taking place there. They resigned. ADB is in a mess."
Hinds said some people are getting restive and were saying they believed that this Government was practising racism.
"And you (the Government) need to take note.
"People know that injustice and inequity is what is going down," he said, referring to the number of Government offices, complexes and large construction projects that were being placed out of Port of Spain.
He said Government was conducting a "scorch and burn policy" as it "emptied Port of Spain, I suspect deliberately".
Hinds said he was not a racist and loved and respected everyone.
He said Super Industrial Services (SIS) Limited, "a company well known to my friends on the other side...particularly the Prime Minister", was being given contracts such as the Siparia Market Complex.
He said the evaluation team found that fluctuating data suggested that the company was insolvent between 2006 and 2009, but it found a significant revenue increase in 2010. He called on the Attorney General to investigate some of these awards. He said he received reports that the company did work at "a certain private residence in Phillipine", the company logo was sprayed out, to hide that it was doing work at "a certain mansion in Phillipine".