Opposition Calls on MOCA to Probe PetroJam


The Opposition People’s National Party, PNP, is calling on the Major Organised Crime and Anti-Corruption Agency, MOCA, to probe controversial happenings at the State-owned oil refinery, Petrojam.

In a statement last evening, the PNP says it wants MOCA to investigate two instances of reimbursement of expenses to former chairman Dr. Perceval Bahado-Singh for travel and other related expenses for trips he eventually didn’t go on.

It’s also raising concerns about direct payments made out to an individual on behalf of a company that had provided services to Petrojam.

But, the PNP is alleging the invoice was presented on another company’s letterhead.

The PNP says Dr. Bahado Singh was reimbursed over USD$16,000 or just over JMD$2-million for airline tickets he reportedly purchased for official trips overseas.

But, the PNP says although Mr. Bahado Singh was absent from the meetings, he reportedly submitted claims and was refunded by Petrojam for airfare and per diem related to the trips.

It was revealed in Parliament that Dr Bahado Singh returned the money Petrojam reimbursed him for the trip to the UK.

The PNP says another questionable payment is one relating to an agreement between Petrojam and a company for financial analyses and managerial services.

It claims payments were made by direct wire transfers to the bank account of an individual based on invoices dated October 15, 2017, November 16, 2017 and November 20, 2017.

According to the PNP, the invoices were presented on the letterhead of another entity.

The PNP is calling on Petrojam to present its due diligence findings on the company it contracted to conduct the financial analyses and managerial services prior to its engagement with the company and explain why payments were being made to a person other than the contracted entity.

In the meantime, the PNP says there’s a cost overrun relating to the construction of a wall at Petrojam.

It says the National Works Agency, NWA, had provided $29-million. But according to the PNP, the actual construction figure was over $90-million.