April 18, 2021

Guyana Guardian

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Jordan says $4.2B contingencies spending was ‘unforeseen’

-as new finance minister alleges abuse

Ashni Singh

The Ministry of Finance has accused the former government of abusing the Contingencies Fund by withdrawing over $4 billion in the second half of 2019 “to meet a variety of expenditure that had not been budgeted for”, which former minister Winston Jordan has met with incredulity.

“That is why you go to the Contingencies Fund—to meet unbudgeted expenses. We used the fund late in 2019 to meet expenditure related to the Mahaicony sea defence, a debt for the Central Housing and Planning Authority (CH&PA) and two other categories I can’t remember right now. We can’t budget for unforeseen breaches. If that is abuse they must have redefined abuse,” Jordan told Guyana Guardian.

During an interview with the Department of Information (DPI) on Friday, Ashni Singh, Minister with responsibility for Finance, disclosed that after the Caribbean Court of Justice’s ruling upholding the no-confidence vote against the former administration in June 2019, no less than $4.2 billion was drawn from the Contingencies Fund to meet a variety of expenditure that had not been budgeted for.

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