Sat | Apr 29, 2017

Stanberry backs internal audit team in Agro-Parks exposé

Published:Thursday | November 13, 2014 | 11:01 AM
Donovan Stanberry - File

Damion Mitchell, Editor - Radio & Online



KINGSTON, Jamaica:

The Permanent Secretary in the Agriculture Ministry, Donovan Stanberry, has defended the competence of his internal audit team saying he has every confidence in it.




The permanent secretary's position rejects a claim contained in a November 7 letter to him from Dennis Hicky, the former chairman of the Ministry's Ago-Invest Corporation (AIC).



In the letter, a copy of which has been obtained by The Gleaner/Power 106 News Centre, Hicky made scathing remarks about the competence of a key member of the team who conducted a damning audit into the AIC which manages the much-touted Agro Parks project.



Following our initial story about the findings of the auditors, Hicky contacted our news centre yesterday but declined to discuss any point raised in his letter to the permanent secretary.



However, the permanent secretary was foremost about his confidence in the audit team.



Stanberry has challenged claims that he is on a mission to impugn an individual's character as part of a plan to respond to the Agro Parks audit.



Meanwhile, Stanberry says more officials of the AIC, are in the process of responding to the concerns raised in the internal audit.



Based on the audit report some have so far conceded to several of the findings of the auditors.



The audit uncovered questionable spending and overpayments amounting to millions of dollars as well as unapproved variations to the Agro-Parks development contract awarded to ASCO Project Consultants Limited.



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