Education Minister Dismisses Opposition Criticism as “untrue and hypocritical”

Education Minister, Senator Ruel Reid, is rejecting as untrue and hypocritical, a claim made by his Opposition counterpart, Ronald Thwaites.

Mr. Thwaites says disgraceful management by the current Education Minister resulted in some school principals being called before the Court to account for taxes owed by their schools.

However, Minister Reid says the issue is not as grave as is being alleged by the Opposition.

Over the weekend, reports emerged in the print media that several schools from across the Corporate Area have been called before the Sutton Street Tax Court in Kingston. This, as Tax Administration Jamaica (TAJ) moves to collect millions owed by the schools.

A statement by the PNP quotes Mr. Thwaites as saying the development is alarming. Mr. Thwaites says the outstanding taxes are due to disgraceful and misplaced priorities of the Education Minister, Senator Ruel Reid, and his Ministry.

According to Mr. Thwaites – when he, Thwaites, was Education Minister, arrangements were made for all school employee taxes to be deducted at source and all arrears were to have been certified and cleared up.

In response, Minister Reid is chiding the Opposition Spokesman. He says only one school currently has outstanding tax issues.

Minister Reid says the posture taken by Mr. Thwaites is hypocritical.

Minister Reid says the Ministry had taken preemptive steps to prevent Principals being called to Court to account for the outstanding taxes.

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