St Kitts and Nevis: Konris Maynard- Minister of Public Infrastructure, Utilities of St Kitts and Nevis has condemned the remarks made by Duncan “Big Lice” Wattley regarding the disconnection of the electricity in his house.
Minister Maynard called the remarks “defamatory” and “blatant lies” and said that the appropriate actions would be taken against his scandalous, outrageous, and false statements. He said that Wattley deliberately set out the scandal and used his Facebook platform and his position in the government to launch vicious and unfounded attacks against him.
The controversy has come to light after Duncan Wattley, in a Facebook Live Rant, made remarks about the disconnection of the electricity by SKELEC. He condemned Minister Maynard and issued some derogatory statements against him.
After that, Konris Maynard said that all the allegations laid out by Wattley were nothing but big lies. He said that he will not go unanswered or excused as political commentary or under the false premise of “Country Above Self” or unfettered freedom of speech.
Coming to SKELEC, Minister Maynard responded to his allegation and added that his disconnection had nothing to do with me. SKELEC, independent of its line Minister, has its operating procedures for managing its day-to-day affairs, including dealing with outstanding arrears.
He added that he, solely or in collaboration with others, does not directly or indirectly instruct or suggest the disconnection of any customer of SKELEC.
“I first learned of Mr. Wattley’s disconnection via a post made by him on Social Media. Therefore, if Mr Wattley was dissatisfied with the decision made by SKELEC, there was and remains a mature and responsible way to deal with that matter without creating a fictitious narrative loaded with reckless and scandalous attacks aimed at me, my character, and others,”said the minister.
Minister Maynard further asserted that as a minister of government and in particular as Minister with responsibility for SKELEC, he has never used my position to engage in any illegal, corrupt, or fraudulent practices for personal enrichment of any kind.
Besides this, on the allegation of the grant of the contract, Minister Maynard added that he does not hold any legal and or beneficial interest in any company, whether a shell company or otherwise, that engaged in bidding for public contracts.
He said,” The Procurement and Contract (Administration) Act governs the awards of contracts. Section 23 thereof establishes a Procurement Board, the composition of which is mandated thereunder. A review of the said section would clearly show that I am not an ex officio member of the Board, and as such, I am not involved in the process of awarding contracts of this nature.”
Minister Maynard added that he is a reputable citizen of St Kitts and Nevis who has reputable businesses both in the country and abroad.
He takes this allegation seriously and does not intend to ignore them or be scandalised by Wattley. He said that he had instructed his lawyer to take appropriate action, seeking an immediate retraction and apology from him.
Minister said that he will not allow him to disregard his reputation or integrity to stand.