Statement from Secretary of Finance and Enterprise Development

Tobago House of Assembly.
The Division of Finance and Enterprise Development of the Tobago House of Assembly has in the past hired consultants to work on specific projects in which the required expertise does not reside within the Division. This policy has not changed in 2013.

During the period February 2013 to November 2013 Dr Anselm London has been one of several consultants hired to work on specific projects for the Division of Finance and Enterprise Development. His selection has been based on his qualifications which include an MSc degree in Finance and Financial Law and a PHD in Monetary and International Finance. His academic background is supported by extensive consultancy work both in the Caribbean and internationally prior to his serving as Secretary of Finance and Enterprise Development in Tobago for 12 years. The Division believes that his unique combination of skills and experience adds value to the management of the specific projects to which he has been assigned.

The process employed to hire Dr. London is well within the guidelines of the Central Tenders Board for sole select procurement of consultancy services. The Division has directly contracted the services of Dr. London on a project basis, as and when needed. His remuneration is well within the range of consultancy rates. All projects undertaken to date have been satisfactorily completed and have significantly benefited the Division of Finance and Enterprise Development and Tobago in general.

One such example is the pivotal role Dr London played in Tobago’s defence of the MilShirv issue which resulted in the Central Government’s being forced to withdraw its objection to the project in the High Court and this has cleared the way for a $143 million investment to take place in Tobago. During the construction phase, this investment will lead to the creation of temporary jobs and when complete, to improved facilities for the employees of the Division of Agriculture and for all Tobagonians who have to access the services offered by the Division.

Dr. London’s engagement by the Division of Finance is not contrary to any decision of the Executive Council which deferred a note to hire Dr London on a fixed salary for a fixed period of time and referred the matter to the Division of Finance for its attention. The Secretary of Finance is on record confirming the hiring of Dr, London and as indicated by the Division’s Administrator, Dr London has been hired as required to work on specific matters for which he is paid.

It can be expected that from time to time the Tobago House of Assembly may need additional expertise in order to carry out its duties and to perform its functions and special projects adequately. At such times, resources may be brought on board with due consideration of the procedures for undertaking such contractual arrangements. In the contracting of services to support the strategic development of Tobago and the needs of the various Divisions, the THA considers public expectations of continued high performance, the challenges of attracting world class resources to Tobago where we must compete against the rest of the region and the world for such resources and a commitment to attracting and retaining the services of suitably qualified Tobagonians.

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