The residents of Antigua will make a non-partisan United March for Justice on Thursday, to peacefully protest their government's continuing failure to investigate several major corruption scandals that have shaken the country to its core.. Two of those involve the disgraced MP Asot Michael, who was cashiered as Minister of Investments after evidence of his participation in soliciting million dollars bribes from foreign investors surfaced, and who is also the principal suspect in the disappearance of two hundred Antigua passports, in another scandal.
Michael has refused to surrender his seat in Parliament, notwithstanding a groundswell of public anger at his gross avarice. The third issue involves charges of conspiracy to sell Antigua passports, and charges are pending against the fired Assistant Superintendent of Police, and others named and unknown.
The Government's apologist, the Prime Minister's Chief of Staff Lionel Hurst, has openly and disrespectfully discouraged citizens of Antigua from attending, rudely calling the march pointless, as well as irrelevant, due to the poor showing of the Opposition parties in the recent national elections. However, the memories of widespread election fraud, through the illegal purchase of votes, and the resulting anger of the people of Antigua after they learned about it, and who assert that the election was fixed, due to rampant corruption, should ensure a large turnout at the march.
Additionally, a number of real estate projects, where the foreign investors were never adequately vetted, and who later turned out to be the criminal element, has also infuriated Antiguans, who have called for fundamental reform of the due diligence process.
Participants are being asked to wear white, to demonstrate that they are not turning out on behalf of, or to garner votes for, any political party, and some are calling the event the "White March." There are calls for the march to begin at 3:00 PM. Calls by other government officials to avoid the march are being ignored.
Chronicles of Monte Friesner - Financial Crime Analyst
Contributed by Kenneth Rijock - Financial Crime Consultant