(CMR) A former Education Minister in the British Virgin Islands was arrested and charged for breach of trust by a public officer in relation to the building of a perimeter wall at a high school that had major cost overruns. Myron Walwyn was arrested and charged Tuesday, 1 November.
The project at Elmore Stoutt High School (ESHS) perimeter wall project caused major controversy and led the authorities to launch a formal investigation which ended in 2020. The police sent the findings of their investigation to the DPP's Office to decide whether the evidence warranted a pursuance of prosecution.
According to a statement posted by 284 Media‘s Ronn Grant, Walwyn said he would defend the charges, which he described as unjust. He suggested he was being targeted as the matter was placed before a Commission of Inquiry despite findings being sent to the DPP from the police.
“I am left to believe that the original investigation did not yield their desired results,” he stated, questioning why the findings have not been made public.
“As I have indicated in previous comments on the subject, I will never say that there were no procedural issues with this project. I also do not think that one could find any previously done government project that was faultlessly managed. As such, we all agree that we must continue to work on improving the way we manage all government projects. However, I do not believe that any of those procedural issues warranted or met the criteria of Breach of Trust to justify such a charge for anyone who was involved in the management of the project during its normal course,” Walwyn stated.
“If the intentions are truly to help the BVI to be better able to manage its affairs, I am not convinced that labeling its hardworking citizens as corrupt without concrete evidence and damaging their reputations, livelihoods, and sense of decency is a productive approach. I repudiate any such label being placed on me,” he added.
Walwyn's arrest comes months after BVI's then-premier Andrew Fahie was arrested in Miami on drug-related charges. Earlier this year, the BVI's governor also called for the suspension of the government.