Unprecedented Lack of Transparency Raises Concerns: St.Kitts and Nevis Cannabis and CBI Governance Board Appointments Still Unknown

Basseterre, St.Kitts (April 8th, 2024):-The Drew administration of St. Kitts and Nevis faces mounting criticism over its unprecedented lack of transparency in governance, particularly concerning the appointment of key boards and directors for the Cannabis Authority and Citizenship by Investment (CBI) Unit. Despite promises of accountability and efficiency, the administration’s failure to announce the composition of these crucial bodies has raised serious concerns among citizens and observers alike.

In a panel discussion on November 16th, 2022, Attorney General the Hon. Garth Wilkins outlined the legal framework for the regulation of the cannabis industry, including the establishment of the Cannabis Authority and its board of directors. However, since then, no announcement has been made regarding the appointment of directors, leaving the industry in limbo and citizens in the dark about who is overseeing its development.

Similarly, Prime Minister Dr. Terrance Drew announced in December 2022 the establishment of a Professional Citizenship by Investment (CBI) Board of Governors to oversee the operations of the CBI Unit. Despite the critical role of this board in supervising CBI operations and ensuring compliance with national and international standards, its members remain undisclosed.

This lack of transparency has sparked widespread concern among citizens, who rightfully demand accountability from their government. The opacity surrounding the appointment of board members, who are paid significant salaries from taxpayer funds, raises questions about the administration’s commitment to good governance and public accountability.

Moreover, with the cannabis industry’s development stalled with the seeming absence of announced appointed directors, citizens are left wondering who should be held accountable for the industry’s stagnation. The current roles and responsibilities of the directors in driving the industry forward remain unclear, further fueling frustration and discontent among stakeholders.

One observer described the level of secrecy surrounding the appointment of board members as unprecedented in St. Kitts and Nevis governance. The failure to disclose the identities of these high-level officials undermines public trust and undermines the principles of democracy and accountability.

As citizens demand answers and transparency from their government, the Drew administration faces mounting pressure to disclose the composition of the Cannabis Authority and CBI Board of Governors. Only through openness and accountability can the administration regain the trust of the people and ensure the effective governance of critical sectors like cannabis and citizenship by investment.

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