Opposition People’s National Party’s spokesman on education, Peter Bunting, is calling for a forensic audit of the Caribbean Maritime University’s (CMU) Career Advancement Programme-Youth Empowerment Solutions (CAP-Yes) project.
It was revealed in court yesterday that the university’s president, Professor Fritz Pinnock, former education minister Ruel Reid and three other people are believed to have defrauded the university and the education ministry of more than $55 million. They are out on bail on multiple charges. Bunting says it’s clear that a detailed audit of the CAP-Yes programme is needed. “Really, this whole programme, that the CMU has been running, that on the face of it, is being used as a “slush” fund , for various political purposes, needs a forensic audit by the auditor general or some independent auditor that she selects.” Bunting also said it’s surprising that in light of all the revelations about contracts under the programme, former Jamaica Labour Party MP Othneil Lawrence, who was engaged under the project, is still employed to the CMU. The Ministry of Education has pulled the plug on the CMU’s CAP-Yes project. CAP-Yes was designed to provide an opportunity for unattached youths, to gain training and skills for the job market or to further their education. Meanwhile, Bunting says it’s now time for the CMU Council to resign. “What has come out in court is their failure to provide proper oversight to the administration of the CMU …. I think the board has to take responsibility and resign immediately and allow a new board, that will have the confidence of the public, to take over,” he said.
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