STATEMENT BY ACTING PREMIER OF THE VIRGIN ISLANDS
DR. THE HONOURABLE NATALIO D. WHEATLEY
THURSDAY, 28TH APRIL, 2022
Good evening fellow Virgin Islanders,
As you are aware from news reports, Premier and Minister of Finance Hon. Andrew A. Fahie and Managing Director of the BVI Ports Authority Mrs. Olivane Maynard, have been detained in Miami by the United States Drug Enforcement Administration on alleged charges of conspiracy to import a controlled substance and money laundering.
I nor the other Ministers of Government have spoken with Premier Fahie or Mrs. Maynard. However, we call for them to be afforded due process in the US courts of law. I have spoken with First Lady, Mrs. Sheila Forbes-Fahie. Let us all keep her and the family in our prayers at this difficult time.
As Acting Premier, I have met with the His Excellency the Governor Mr. John Ranking CMG who alerted me of today’s developments. Cabinet as a body met earlier this evening where we discussed the situation. I will also discuss the current circumstances with UK Minister for the Overseas Territories the Right Honourable Amanda Milling MP tomorrow morning, along with the Governor. I cannot comment further on the arrests as it is an active investigation, but I urge calm and patience.
Regarding the Commission of Inquiry report, the Governor has informed Cabinet that he will be publishing the report very soon in light of today’s events. There is no doubt that persons will seek to read the report and view it in the context of the recent arrests. However, as the Governor has said, the two are not connected. I urge the public to read the report with an objective eye in terms of strengthening our systems of Government under a democratic framework of governance, as opposed to draconian measures that would set back the historical constitutional progress we have made as a people. As I have continued to say, we remain committed to good governance.
This is a difficult time and I ask that we come together as a community and remain in prayer.
As agreed with the Governor, and my political colleagues, I will remain Acting Premier. I will update you again in due course.
God’s blessings and Goodnight.