PM Silent On Peter Turnquest Fraud Scandal
Despite his promise of transparency and accountability, Prime Minister Dr. Hubert Minnis remains silent on a more than $20 million fraud scandal involving Deputy Prime Minister Peter Turnquest.
Two companies, Alpha Aviation Limited and Advanced Aviation Limited have filed a lawsuit accusing Captain Randy Butler, Sky Bahamas Airlines Limited, Aviation Oversight Group Ltd. and Turnquest of conspiring “wrongfully and with intent to injure” those companies and/or “to cause loss to them by unlawful means and/or to enrich themselves…”
A writ filed this week alleges that they defrauded the two companies out of more than $20 million between 2008 and 2017.
On Thursday night, Turnquest denied the accusations made against him and labeled them “false claims”.
The irony of the situation is the law firm representing the companies making accusations against the deputy prime minister is owned by Michael Scott,QC who was appointed Chairman of Lucayan Renewal Holdings and Chairman of the Bahamas Hotel Corporation under the Minnis Administration.
However, Minnis has remained silent on these serious allegations made against the man tasked with managing the country’s finances.
Progressive Liberal Party Leader Philip Davis reminded Minnis that he has a duty to act when his ministers refuse to take the honourable course.
“There are two appointees of the Prime Minister. Each has different versions of the truth,” said Davis.
“Michael Scott Q.C. has placed in the public domain by court action, allegations of fraud and dishonesty against the Minister of Finance. Mr. Scott is the Chairman of the Hotel Corporation and in charge of the sale of the Grand Lucayan Hotel in Freeport, Grand Bahama.
The second appointee is Peter Turnquest, the Minister of Finance. Mr Turnquest has said that what Mr. Scott alleges in the writ is false. In other words, the Finance Minister said that lies have been told on him,” Davis added.
“How is this resolved in the face of two of the Prime Minister's appointees alleging one has told lies on the other?
One of the Prime Minister's appointees must be telling the truth.”
The PLP leader said both men have clear conflicts between their public duties and their private affairs.
“In our view, before the end of the day they must both act to do the honourable thing which our system demands. If they fail to resign, the Prime Minister must invite their departures forthwith,” said Davis.