Christie maintains that delisted contractors provided wrong data
Jerome Reynolds, Staff Reporter
Former Contractor General Greg Christie has expressed dismay that 84 works contractors have been cleared of wrongdoing after they were cited for giving fraudulent information to win Government contracts.
In 2009, the contractors were removed from the list of entities approved by the National Contracts Commission (NCC) following an investigation by the Office of the Contractor General then headed by Christie.
However, last week, Works Minister, Dr Omar Davies, told the Parliament that while the police concluded that there were errors in the registration of the contractors, their actions did not amount to fraud.
In posts on his Twitter account Greg Christie expressed surprised at the development.
Christie maintained that in all instances of the OCG’s referrals to the Police, the contractors made materially false statements on their application forms.
He further said that no applicant was delisted, or referred to the Police, before being given an opportunity to be heard in a formal, documented interview.
Christie reiterated that the decision to delist the contractors was justified as he noted that the NCC Works Application indicates that contractors who are found to have provided erroneous information should not be registered.
He further said the Application Form notes that if already registered, the registration should be revoked where incorrect information is provided.
And Mr. Christie added that applicants are required to sign a voluntary declaration form, before a Justice of the Peace, swearing to the accuracy of the information on the pain of criminal prosecution.
He pointed out that providing false material is a criminal offence under the Perjury Act and carries a fine and a prison term of no more than two years.
The former contractor general said it is beyond him that the contractors could have been cleared given what he contends were glaring circumstances uncovered in his probe.
Since the clearing of the contractors, Percival LaTouche, Chairman of The Jamaica Association of Contractors and Construction Consultants has expressed relief saying his colleagues can now resume their livelihood.
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