Jagdeo declared today that he is willing to work with the APNU+AFC Administration in approaching any major international private investigative firm or even the International Criminal Police Organisation (INTERPOL) to determine whether any Guyanese politician, whether past or present, have stashed some of their monies in foreign tax havens or anywhere else.
In light of the huge leak of confidential documents from a Panamanian law firm which reveals how tax havens are used to hide wealth for many prominent figures throughout the globe, former President and now Opposition Leader Dr Bharrat Jagdeo has made it pellucidly clear that he is not one of those world leaders or prominent global figures who stashed personal funds in offshore accounts or at any other tax haven.
Jagdeo stated that he is fully prepared to cooperate with the government of the day in such regard but maintained that he will not do so “surreptitiously” through the local State Asset Recovery Unit (SARU) that has been recently established in Guyana.
The Opposition Leader explained that in a conversation he had with Prime Minister (PM) Moses Nagamootoo, he said that the Opposition and the Government should agree in Parliament to request the assistance of international investigators to report on every Member of Parliament (MP) who has foreign bank accounts, assets, and shares in companies.
According to Jagdeo, if this move was made as a collaborative effort and the National Assembly were to approve a Motion to this effect then the international community would not view it as “partisan”.
He reminded that his Party, the People’s Progressive Party/Civic (PPP/C) had previously taken a Motion to the National Assembly where all MPs’ information given to the Integrity Commission would be released to the public.
However, this Motion was not passed since the Government voted against such a move.
As such, Jagdeo is questioning whether the present Administration will support the Opposition’s proposal to have a probe conducted by an independent investigator about past and present MPs and Heads of State.
On Sunday, 11 million documents were leaked from Panamanian law firm Mossack Fonseca. These files show how that company helped some of its clients launder money, dodge sanctions and avoid taxes.
These leaked documents are said to implicate 12 current or former Heads of State, and at least 60 other persons linked to current or former world leaders. (Kristen Macklingam)