KINGSTOWN, St. Vincent, CMC – Opposition Leader Arnhim Eustace has accused Prime Minister Dr. Ralph Gonsalves of not telling the truth when he told the nation that two journalists from the British Broadcasting Corporation (BBC) had said he (Eustace) was the source of information that a foreign investor had left a briefcase with money at the office of the prime minister recently.
“He is a liar,” Eustace said on his weekly radio programme, but acknowledged that he had been interviewed by the journalists last week as part of their investigation of Harlequin, the company that owns Buccament Bay Resort here.
“Where could I get information of his accepting anything? I am saying that Gonsalves is a liar when it comes to that,” Eustace said on his radio programme, sponsored by his New Democratic Party (NDP).
“… I said nothing like that,” he told radio listeners, indicating “the evidence will be provided just now. They will see it”.
Eustace had initially said he was not going to respond to the accusation until later this week, but told listeners “I like to have all my facts straight before I respond but I will say a few words about a couple of things from the last two days”.
Over the last weekend, Prime Minister Gonsalves, who is attending the Caribbean Community (CARICOM) intersessional summit in Haiti, told the nation that the two BBC journalists accosted him on an airplane in Barbados and accused him of taking money from Ames, an allegation Gonsalves denied.
BBC journalist Paul Kenyon told the Caribbean Media Corporation (CMC) on Sunday that he and another colleague approached Gonsalves on the aircraft.
“We had asked him for an interview before and he refused so we decided that we would tackle him on the airplane when it came to a halt,” Kenyon told CMC.
In his radio broadcast on Monday, Eustace said that the local economy continues to struggle and there has been no growth in the vital banana industry as being reported by the government.
“We really have to take some positive action on the economic front in order to bring this country back to some sense of normalcy on the economic front.
“So, that is the big issue now, despite all the more sensational stuff that we are hearing about,” he added.