Commentary • Number 996 • Friday, November 29, 2013

Don't Forget Arthur Porter

by-GA Dwyer Astaphan
 
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In Parliament earlier this week, Denzil Douglas accused Timothy Harris of economic terrorism.

And nobody reprimanded him for such un-parliamentary language.

Of course, that Chamber has long stopped being a Parliament, thanks to the denizens of degradation and decrepitude who control it.

Douglas’ tirade had to do with the economic citizenship program which he would have you believe Harris and the Opposition are trying to shut down.

Typical Douglas. Caught with his pants down once again, and looking to blame other people.

I know of no politician in this country who is against the concept of economic citizenship. But I would trust absolutely no politician who does not have concerns about the lack of transparency and accountability that characterizes our country’s program, and about the fact that money which should be in a Government account is sitting behind the screen of a Foundation (worse yet, one over which Douglas exercises omnipotence).

In some countries this lack of transparency, this furtiveness, alone could have sparked massive problems. Yet, despite the injustices the deprivation, the depravity and the corruption, Kittitians and Nevisians have contained their anger and outrage.

If Timothy Harris is worth his salt as an elected representative of the people of this nation, and as a citizen, he would’ve had no choice or desire but to inform the people of this nation of the Moghadam matter.

Yet for his altruistic and responsible act, he is accused by Douglas of being an economic terrorist.

And Sam Condor is being accused of being complicit, because he was Minister of Foreign Affairs when Moghadam got his diplomatic passport.

Well, Condor was also Minister of Foreign Affairs when the Dubai Consular Office story broke too. And he had no say in that matter, just like he has never had any say in any matter of people getting diplomatic passports.

Douglas has the first, second, last, indeed, the only say in who gets these passports.

But once you say or do anything that rocks that greedy, self-serving, power hungry, corrupt boat, you are accused of all sorts of things and branded with  nasty names.

If Moghadam paid US$1 million for a diplomatic passport, to whom did he pay the money? Are our diplomatic passports for sale? Why would he get one? What benefits would our country reap from him being a special envoy to Turkey (where we already representation) and Azerbaijan, two countries  with which his own birth land, Iran, does not enjoy especially good relations? Why would he have been issued a diplomatic passport as an Iranian citizen when Douglas was well aware of the fact that the Canadian Government had been having concerns about certain persons, mostly Iranians, entering Canada with our passports since 2011?

Douglas also must have known that in February,2013, another person holding a St. Kitts & Nevis passport, this time a man from Kazakhstan named Rustem Tursunbayev, was put under house arrest in Canada, suspected of being involved in organized crime  and of stealing US$20 million from a major Kazakhstan nuclear company.

And  Douglas must also have known that the Iranian Ambassador to Canada had been withdrawn earlier.

Would he also have known about the story of the son of an African Head of State who had allegedly made a deal to buy land in St. Kitts for US$5 million, in exchange for the issue of five diplomatic passports? And, as the story goes, the land deal wasn’t closed but the passports were issued. Then the son got himself into big trouble with the police in France and a mad scramble was made for the passports to be recovered. And we are told that the son wants back money and his father is very displeased. Money from whom?

Is that a true story? And if so, would Douglas have known about it?

Why did Moghadam lie to officials at Toronto Airport and say that he was in Canada to see Prime Minister Harper? Was our Honorary Consul to Canada, John Allen, aware of Moghadam’s visit? Was he at the airport to meet Moghadam? What could Moghadam, in his already questionable capacity as a special envoy to Turkey and Azerbaijan, want to discuss with Harper?

Let’s cut to the chase: he was in Canada, not for a million reasons, but for one:  to find ways to feather his own nest as a businessman, using the luxurious cushion of a diplomatic passport of St. Kitts & Nevis.

A diplomatic passport that he, like every other person past and present over the past 18 plus years, could have gotten only with the approval of Denzil Douglas. Douglas is the only member of Cabinet who knows all of the persons who have been allowed to carry diplomatic passports.

In other words, it is a well kept secret. Douglas’ secret. And I guarantee you, when  all is revealed with regard to who have had, and who have, diplomatic passports, a lot of you are going to hang your heads in shame.

Then what can Douglas tell us about Mohammad Reza Amir Hassankhani, Asadollah Asgar Oladi, Mesiam Khanian, Saeid Reza Asemi Zavareth, and Afshin Hayadari, all of Iran?

And there are many others.

But I will end with a man who is not from Iran. He is a Canadian, originally from Sierra Leone. And a medical doctor.

His name is Arthur Porter. He is a con man. He is so smart that he conned his way  to become Head of Canada’s spy agency.

He was put in jail in Panama awaiting extradition to Canada to face charges of defrauding the McGill University Health Centre in a US$22.5 million kickback scheme.

Do you know one of the grounds on which he objected to his arrest by the Panamanians? He told them that he was a diplomat for Sierra Leone.

The same Arthur Porter was in St. Kitts in August, 2011, at which time the Office of Prime Minister Denzil Douglas disclosed that Porter was developing cancer treatment facilities in our country and in Antigua, and that Porter was already “working with the Government of St. Kitts & Nevis” so that government patients as well as private patients could be seen at the small facility  to be constructed in St. Kitts.

And Douglas has the heart to call people economic terrorists!

 

 

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