Friday, February 23, 2018

Kamla calls for LifeSport programme probe


STANDING PROUD: Prime Minister Kamla Persad-Bissessar waves the national flag after arriving for the People’s Partnership fourth anniversary celebration yesterday at Mid Centre Mall, Chaguanas. —Photo: ANISTO ALVES

Mark Fraser

Prime Minister Kamla Persad-Bissessar announced yesterday that she has moved the controversial LifeSport programme from the Ministry of Sport to the Ministry of National Security.

Speaking at the People’s Partnership fourth anniversary rally at Mid Centre Mall, Chaguanas last night, Persad Bissessar noted the concerns raised in the public domain about the programme.

To this end, she indicated her intention to instruct the Ministry of Finance to conduct a full audit into the programme and move the management of the programme to another ministry.

To date, the Government has spent over $150 million on the programme, which the Ministry of Finance has discovered is riddled with irregularities.

The LifeSport programme is being highlighted in a series by the Express, which showed that the programme has been used by the Government to fund the Jamaat al Muslimeen’s operations in Carapo.

Sport Minister Anil Roberts has not responded to calls by the Express to answer questions on the programme and any association he has with the Carapo Muslims.

In a recent interview with the Sunday Express, Rajaee Ali, the co-ordinator of the Carapo community said he’d met Roberts “about nine or ten times” during the life span of the programme.

On Friday, Opposition Leader Dr Keith Rowley said: “That money has been finding its way into all kinds of hands of people to buy guns and ammunition and to enrich all who involved and I can tell you I was on a platform a month ago and told you that a permanent secretary had to run from the country post haste, because when you play with dogs, you have to be afraid of the fleas.”  

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