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OCG not permitted to investigate Sandals Whitehouse sale - attorney

Published:Tuesday | October 22, 2013 | 6:35 PM

Barbara Gayle, Justice Coordinator



Queen’s Counsel Hugh Small has argued that the rule of law does not permit an investigation of the sale of the Government’s share in the Sandals Whitehouse Hotel in Westmoreland by the Office of the Contractor General (OCG).




He was making submissions on behalf of Gorstew Limited in the Judicial Review Court today.



Last year, Gorstew, a company controlled by Gordon ‘Butch’ Stewart, filed an application asking the court to determine if the Contractor General has the power to investigate the 2011 deal.



It said this action was taken after the company received a notice from the Office of the Contractor General (OCG), last June informing that an OCG investigation into the sale was continuing.



The governments' share of the property was sold to Gorstew Limited for US$40 million.



The OCG had raised concerns about the process observed in the divestment, pointing to possible irregularity and impropriety and urged the Prime Minister to halt the deal.



However, the then Jamaica Labour Party government had argued that all was above board in the sale.



The hearing continues tomorrow.



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