BASSETERRE, ST. KITTS, May 15th 2017 – A three-day damage control media blitz by St. Kitts and Nevis Prime Minister Dr. the Hon. Timothy Harris, has still not provided answers on who in the government has been receiving money to protect Chinese fugitive, Ren Biao.
Silent for five straight days after CaribUpdate broke story, Prime Minister Harris spent the next three days dealing with the issue on a government-controlled radio talk show hosted by his Special Envoy Michael Powell on Monday 8th May; in a nation-wide radio and TV address on Tuesday 9th May and during a Press Conference on Wednesday 10th May.
But the question most people are asking: Who in the Team Unity Government has been protecting and collecting money to protect Ren Biao?
China has accused the Team Unity Government of Prime Minister Harris of refusing to handover Ren Biao, who is on Interpol’s wanted list for allegedly stealing US$100 million from a Chinese state company.
Chinese diplomatic sources have also disclosed that in an intercepted communication on April 16, Ren called relatives in Beijing seeking an additional US$190,000 to help to continue to pay for his protection by Kittitian authorities.
“This government knows that it has made a fundamental mistake in not attempting to deal with the issue when it should have done so. We know that for some reason, the government has failed to deal with this issue in the way they have dealt with similar issues,” said former prime minister and current Leader of the Opposition, the Rt. Hon. Dr. Denzil L. Douglas at the end of a protest march against corruption on Friday.
“If a foreign country is going to accuse a government of corruption, blatantly and openly, don’t you think that the government should respond appropriately to this particular charge?” asked Dr. Douglas, who added:
“Lack of a denial indicates there is something to hide. Who is this money going to? How long has this being going on? How much money has been paid so far? “
Declaring that the government needs to answer those questions, the former prime minister said the call must be reinforced that “Prime Minister Harris must resign.”
Dr. Douglas said the issue will not only affect the Citizenship by Investment programme in St. Kitts and Nevis, but the other programmes in Antigua and Barbuda, Dominica, Grenada and St. Lucia.
“This matter has gone beyond party politics because it affects the reputation of St. Kitts and Nevis in the eyes of nations around the world, as well as agencies including Interpol.