Lutchmedial seeks $1.8 million paid to official

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UNC Sen. Jayanti Lutchmedial. FILE PICTURE

OPPOSITION Sen. Jayanti Lutchmedia has raised questions about a public entity paying $1.8 million into a senior government official’s credit union account. His allegations were contained in a post on his Facebook page on Tuesday.

She said the payment was disclosed in a source of funds declaration form. Lutchmedial said the form was leaked, along with two award letters from the public body, as well as the personal identification of a woman involved in the transaction.

The senator said a check from the public body was also discovered and was made payable directly to the credit union. The letters of attribution were made to a relative of the public official and were provided to support the claim, Lutchmedia said.

Lutchmedial said the award letters amounted to $1.1 million.

She said the case should get the attention of the Prime Minister, the Financial Intelligence Unit and the TTPS.

Lutchmedial asked if the award letters were followed by a contract, why was the public body disbursing funds directly to the credit union, why was there a difference between the two sums and was the transaction reported to the Inland Revenue Division and the Integrity Commission?

Newsday attempted to get a comment from the official named by Lutchmedial, but calls to the official’s cellphone went unanswered and there were no responses to text messages and WhatsApp messages sent to the official’s cellphone.

Lutchmedial, the Trinidad Express newspaper and journalist Anna Ramdass have all been sued by Minister for Youth Development and National Service Foster Cummings, over a special branch report written in 2019 when he was a government senator.

Following allegations raised by Lutchmedial as it referenced the secret Special Branch report, Cummings was defended by the Prime Minister after calls were made for Cummings to be sacked from the Cabinet.

Dr Rowley clarified that he had seen no evidence of wrongdoing.

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