Blatant disrespect! Skelton Cline rejects June release of COI report
Social commentator Claude Skelton Cline called the timing of the release of the Commission of Inquiry (COI) report a “blatant disregard and disrespect” for BVI residents and the leaders they elected.
In an interview on ZBVI radio yesterday, the talk show host and clergyman lashed out at the United Kingdom (UK) and Governor John Rankin over a release schedule which predicted a probable date in June for the conflict of interest report to find its way into the public domain.
During the interview, Skelton Cline asked how elected officials can travel to the UK to negotiate anything with the Governor and other UK officials on behalf of the people of BVI.
“If the elected representatives of the government and the opposition think that they have the right to present themselves in the name of the people without the latter knowing why and for what purpose they are fleeing, it is false”, a said the commentator. .
According to Skelton Cline, the governor’s timeline is effectively six to seven months before any likely general election that might take place.
BVI elections are constitutionally scheduled for early 2023 and Prime Minister Andrew Fahie has repeatedly indicated he is not inclined to call an election date before then.
A line in the sand
Meanwhile, the talk show host has suggested that the timeline for making the report public be rejected.
“That for me and others should be a line in the sand,” Skelton Cline said.
He continued: ‘I think on behalf of the people this is another colonial move and the UK just doesn’t understand the people of these Virgin Islands and the people of these Virgin Islands need to see this for what it is, call it for what it is and don’t let that happen.
Skelton Cline suggested that people call the offices of their ministers and elected officials and bomb their phones to express their displeasure with the modus operandias planned by the governor.
“What I hope is that the people we elected actually have a different mindset,” the blunt commentator said.
He also did not rule out protesting the calendar in the streets of the BVI.
“Of course it’s a democratic society we live in,” he said when asked about possible street protests. “The people can express themselves in protest if they are not in favor of a process that they see being put in place”.
“There is nothing in there that demonstrates good governance, nothing in there that demonstrates transparency – the very thing that the UK came here and investigated us and our ancestors over the seventy last years. It’s just plain wrong on the face of it,” the outspoken pastor added.
Skelton Cline and his controversial dealings with the government during the year was one of the COI’s focal points during the investigation.
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