Sun | Aug 9, 2020

Full Text | PNP expresses confidence in Lisa Hanna

Published:Sunday | July 5, 2020 | 2:17 PM
Member of Parliament St Ann South East, Lisa Hanna - File photo

The People’s National Party (PNP) says it has full confidence in its general election campaign chief spokesperson and Member of Parliament St Ann South East, Lisa Hanna.

This comes after Hanna was slammed for nepotism and cronyism in the award of millions of dollars in contracts in St Ann in a ruling by the director of public prosecutions.

READ: Lisa Hanna dodges charges but scolded for contract nepotism

In a statement today, the PNP says the ruling exonerated Hanna from criminal conduct.

“This is equivalent, in our view, to a full and complete exoneration of Ms Hanna and this matter should now be put to rest,” the party said.

Full Statement

The People’s National Party (PNP) is expressing full confidence in its General Election Campaign Chief spokesperson and the Member of Parliament St Ann South East, Ms Lisa Hanna.

In a statement today, the PNP said it was always clear from the original report of the Office of the Contractor General (OCG), three years ago, that Ms Hanna administered her constituency affairs in a manner in keeping with the principles of good governance and in accordance with the rules governing the Constituency Development Fund, and the Special Employment programme in particular.

The party said the ruling of the Director of Public Prosecutions (DPP) exonerated Ms Hanna from criminal conduct.

Further, the DPP stated that the allegations did not amount to misconduct or abuse of public trust, explicitly stating that “…there was no allegation or evidence that she departed from established procurement procedures or breached the criminal law.”

“This is equivalent, in our view, to a full and complete exoneration of Ms Hanna and this matter should now be put to rest,” the Party said.

The PNP said further that Ms Hanna and her entire constituency organisation, in executing the Christmas employment programme, adhered to the requirements, brought substantial benefit to the poor and not a single person was unpaid.

It said the St Ann Municipal Corporation implemented, administered and paid all contractors.

All procedures were followed.

The PNP said this was the way in which programmes have been implemented over the years, even prior to Ms Hanna’s incumbency as a Member of Parliament thirteen years ago.

It has always been the practice that MPs recommend contractors for these types of programmes.

It said in this investigation by the OCG, the contracts were all between $30,000 and $50,000, designed to benefit the poor and needy during the Christmas season and to spruce up the environment.

The PNP said it is proud of the record of its Members of Parliament and Councillors in administering constituency and divisional programmes over the years with integrity and probity.

The party said, when it formed the government, it was largely responsible for the construct of Jamaica’s anti-corruption architecture.

This includes the Parliament Integrity Act, the Access to Information Act, the opening of Parliamentary Committees to the public, the establishment of the Public Appropriations and Administration Committee (PAAC) and the Corruption Prevention Act. 

Our last action in 2015, was the drafting of the bill to establish the single anti-corruption agency, the Integrity Commission.

The party said it also set up the Major Organised Crime and Anti-Corruption Agency (MOCA) to bring new capacity and a new paradigm in corruption investigation in Jamaica.

The PNP said the recent unwarranted attacks on Ms Hanna by Jamaica Labour Party’s ministers and spokespersons are designed to create a false equivalency with themselves to divert attention from the litany of corruption issues which plagues its administration, including Petrojam.

The party said it would continue to be relentless in its role as the main watchdog to end corruption and ferret out breaches and abuse by the Holness-led administration.

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