The United Progressive Party (UPP) has written to the Director of the Social Security Scheme, David Matthias, requesting detailed financial records. It is attempting to determine the cause of the Scheme’s ongoing financial troubles and continued late payments to its beneficiaries.
Political Leader Harold Lovell notes that cash payments on the Social Security bond are critical in alleviating late payments.
Since it was the Antigua Labour Party Goverment that brought the system to its knees — and since Matthias says the Administration has made timely payments to the Scheme – then Lovell is asking for a breakdown of the $300 million the Government allegedly has paid in.
Meanwhile, Lovell says that the former US Naval Base property is not helping the Social Security to meeting its financial needs.
He says the Scheme needs cash, and it is important to know whether the transfer in ownership of the base was intended to reduce the bond or part of an asset swap.
In the same vein, Senator Damani Tabor is also concerned that the Browne Administration has applied assets such as the Naval Base towards the bond.
In his letter dated June 14, the UPP Political Leader says that full disclosure of this information will help shed light on whether the Government is meeting its full obligations or not.
“This will determine whether monthly cash payments on the Social Security bond are being made,” which would alleviate the late payment of pensions and other benefits, it says.
The UPP says that senior public servants and the administrators of statutory bodies are duty-bound to provide full and transparent information to the public.
Moreover, it says that “this unvarnished information should be provided routinely to demonstrate the Government’s commitment to meeting its obligations.”