THE EDITOR, Sir:
Your columnist Orville Taylor, in his contribution to the In Focus section of the September 29, 2013, issue of The Sunday Gleaner, asks, 'What will be Portia's legacy?'
He then proceeds to list major achievements of the leadership of the People's National Party, including establishment of the Office of the Contractor General (OCG) as one of the accomplishments of Michael Manley. This is incorrect.
The OCG was first proposed by me in the late 1970s when I was chairman of the Public Accounts Committee (PAC) of the House of Representatives. In that position, I examined several projects submitted to the PAC in which fraud was being practised openly. For instance, at Kenilworth Youth Camp in Hanover, boys recruited for training in agriculture paid part of their pay to farmers to do the work while they became involved in terrorist activities inspired by politics.
My call for the establishment of a contractor general went unheeded. It was repeated in Parliament in 1979, again without success. It was dealt with, however, during my term as prime minister and enacted in the House of Representatives in 1986.
This correction is in the interest of keeping the historical record accurate.
Former Prime Minister