JIS News

KINGSTON — Attorney Anthony Levy on Tuesday (May 17) formally requested the FINSAC Commission of Enquiry to seek to have former Minister of Water and Housing, Dr. Karl Blythe, appear at the enquiry.

Mr. Levy’s request follows on the heels of press reports of Dr. Blythe stating that the previous Government, of which he was a part, was to be blamed for the 1990s financial crisis.

Dr. Blythe was quoted as stating, “I personally apologize to all those who may have suffered during this financial crisis."

Mr. Levy said that Dr. Blythe’s statements were “totally contradictory” to those given by his former cabinet colleague, Dr. Omar Davies, who was the Minister of Finance and Planning during the period of the crisis. He suggested that Dr. Blythe “would have a lot to offer from his personal and intimate knowledge of the situation, as a member of the Cabinet at the time”.

“The Commission will discuss and make a decision on that,” chairman of the FINSAC Enquiry, Worrick Bogle, responded.

“He seems to be the one ‘former politician who would be willing to come and tell the truth’,” Mr. Levy added. Mr. Bogle said the comments were noted.

Mr. Levy had suggested last week that former Prime Minister, Most Hon P.J. Patterson, be asked to appear at the enquiry, following his statement suggesting that there could have been serious bloodletting, if his administration had not created the Financial Sector Adjustment Company (FINSAC) to deal with the crisis. Mr. Bogle had said, prior to the statement, that he saw no need to request Mr. Patterson’s presence.

The enquiry resumes on May 30, after a two week break created by the unavailability of one of the commissioners, Charles Ross. Former senior PriceWaterhouseCoopers’ partner, Richard Downer, is scheduled to appear on that date. While former Century National Bank head, Don Crawford, is expected to appear the following week.

By BALFORD HENRY, JIS Reporter