Is Minnis serious about corruption?
Disgraced Bridge Authority Chairman Greg Bonaby is back on the job despite damning allegations made against him.
He is enjoying the protection of the prime minister who doesn’t appear to be serious about corruption and was instead focused on manufacturing evidence against his political adversaries.
Will the anti-corruption unit be brought in to investigate serious claims of corruption against the Bridge Authority chairman, who has been intimidating employees since his return from sick leave?
Under the Christie Administration, legislation was changed, mandating all government corporations, including The Bridge Authority, to send all surplus funds to the consolidated fund at the end of the fiscal year. However, Bridge Authority sources say there will be no surplus funds from TBA because its chairman is finding ways to spend it in ways that benefit himself.
Bonaby allegedly ordered the authority to pay $50,000 for a street sweeping machine valued at half that amount, without board approval, while the authority has a $50,000 contract with a private company that provides regular cleaning services for both Paradise Island bridges.
Two weeks after the truck was purchased, it broke down.
While on sick leave, Bonaby also went around TBA’s acting chairman and issued a nearly $19,000 contract to a company owned by his friend to perform an assessment already conducted by the Ministry of Works for free, according to documents obtained by the Gallery.
Though the company requested half of the money up front, Bonaby ordered that a cheque for the full amount be issued before services were rendered.
It was the same company that Bonaby issued contracts to for the building of jersey walls for $35,275 and a $22,500 retainer wall, at inflated prices, without board approval.
Insiders told the Gallery that an investigation had been launched into allegations made against Bonaby but the decision was made to sweep the matter under the rug as the chairman is a childhood friend of Prime Minister Dr. Hubert Minnis.
The Bridge Authority’s board of directors is afraid to challenge Bonaby despite his actions.
Bradley Mcphee, Sterling Cleare, Joan Evans, Mavis Vanderpool, Peggy Williams and Michelle Griffin sit silently while their chairman treats the authority’s coffers like his personal bank account.
However, they are questioning among themselves if Minnis is serious about stamping out corruption or whether it was merely a campaign promise conjured up to get his party into office and destroy his political opponents.
Based on recent events, it appears to be the latter.