Moonilal wants Las Alturas report made public

Thursday, September 8, 2016 - 07:00

Former Housing Minister Dr Roodal Moonilal is calling for the report of the Commission of Inquiry into the Las Alturas Housing Development to be released to the public.

Dr Moonilal says it is even more important given that some of the people who were under review by the Commission, are now holding high position in the governance of the country.

The following is Dr Moonilal's statement.

"The report of the Commission of Enquiry into the Las Alturas Housing Estate at Morvant must be made available to the national community, which funded the failed $80 million project and the exhaustive enquiry.

The Government must release the report, in furtherance of its repeated mantra of commitment to transparency and accountability and an end to corruption and waste.

Notably, the Chairman of the Commission, Justice Mustapha Ibrahim, has described the Las Alturas project as “a tragedy.”

Full disclosure is particularly necessary since certain critical personnel involved in the disastrous venture are currently in key national positions, controlling vast sums of taxpayers’ money.

Prime Minister Dr. Keith Rowley was Minister of Housing and Noel Garcia was Managing Director of Housing Development Corporation.

Today, Dr. Rowley controls the national economy and directs policy decisions, while Mr. Garcia heads the multi-billion-dollar Urban Development Corporation of Trinidad and Tobago (UDECOTT)

Trinidad and Tobago must learn what guided the then-PNM regime to expend previous national resources on unstable land, an exhausted quarry, for which there were no construction approvals.

It would be most enlightening to find out why the PNM administration persisted with the costly project in spite of expert advice of its geo-technical volatility and unsuitability for construction.

Publication of the report is the first step in ensuring there is no recurrence of this scandalous waste of public funds.

The commissioners must be lauded for completing and submitting their report, in spite of the lack of cooperation of the project’s contractor and of Calder Hart, the PNM’s recent poster boy of corruption and squander.

I look forward to the much-anticipated Las Alturas report being made public as a matter of urgency."