Trinidad and Tobago: Half a billion dollars for the faulty New Ferry apt James! said Kamla Persad Bissessar, Member parliament of UNC Party in her recent Facebook post targeting the government.
The lawmaker said “the vessel left a shipyard and is on its way to Trinidad and Tobago, but had to stop at various locations to be inspected.”
When the vessel was in Malta for inspection, we hoped that an all-new ship would have been free of any shortcomings, as all taxpayers are paying half a billion dollars for it.
In my possession, I have a copy of an inspection document from Malta stating that one or two deficiencies were not identified on inspection, but there were a total of 6 deficiencies on this half-billion dollar vessel.
These defects in the vessel range from lack of proper certification and documentation to missing fire safety equipment and lack of proper structural access points to critical areas of the ship.
It was also discovered that the electronic charts that assisted the navigation of the vessel were expired and did not conform to current maritime codes.
The fact that these deficiencies are perceived as a brand-new yacht reflects a lack of focus in preparing the ship before being shipped to our country.
“You see, this was a government-to-government system which is no longer subject to the revised Procurement Act. They can do these shady big purchases without any inspection,” MP alleged.
“For this reason we need proper Procurement Law. To stop this stray of taxpayer money.”