As the Gaston Browne Administration is pledging to continue supporting the efforts of failed investor Marvelous Mike Press to revive the now “defunct” Antigua Airways, the United Progressive Party (UPP) is stepping up its campaign to get answers to the airline saga that has brought shame to Antigua and Barbuda.
The UPP continues to encourage residents and members of the Diaspora to sign the petition that calls for a public inquiry into the Antigua Airways/migrant smuggling fiasco.
Leader of the Opposition Jamale Pringle notes that the airline, whose flights from Nigeria to Antigua were suspended in January, was promoted as “The Pride of the Caribbean.”
However, he says, the venture and the airline turned out to be the biggest “Lie of the Caribbean” through which both the West African passengers and the people of Antigua and Barbuda were fooled.
Accordingly, he says the Government should be seeking to get to the bottom of what he terms “this international fiasco,” and he adds that the only way to do so is through the commissioning of a full public inquiry.
Therefore, Pringle says that those who affix their signature to the petition will be doing a great service to their country.
The petition can be signed online here: https://www.change.org/p/call-for-a-full-public-inquiry-into-the-antigua-airways-human-trafficking-scandal
He says that a public inquiry will force Prime Minister Gaston Browne and his Cabinet ministers; other government officials; Antigua Airways executives; charter companies and others to testify under oath and give truthful details about the genesis of the airline and the arrival of the West Africans.
Pringle says that information disclosed through an inquiry can end the cover-up. It would expose the complete circumstances that set into motion the recent events in which several West Africans were lost while attempting to get to a US territory in March.
Additionally, the Opposition leader says, there are other benefits to having a public inquiry. These include identifying all the persons who planned and profited from the scandal; delivering justice to the exploited West Africans; bringing closure to the grieving families; and restoring the good name of Antigua and Barbuda within the regional and international communities.
Persons can support the petition and affix their signature to the document by visiting change.org, or by reaching out to any UPP parliamentarian, former candidate, or executive member of the Party.
Meanwhile, the Government insists it will continue to stand behind the now-grounded airline and its principal shareholder.
Reportedly, the owner of Marvelous Mike Press has informed the Browne Administration that he is exploring various options to revive the airline in spite of its short-lived launch.