Beaches, Parks probe will wrap up ‘soon’

Police: We are not looking into a specific person 

Deputy Commissioner of Police Leamond Deleveaux said yesterday that police are investigation “alleged irregularities” at the Bahamas Public Parks and Beaches Authority and should be complete with their investigation in a few weeks.

Delevaux confirmed that police spoke with Free National Movement (FNM) Deputy Leader Shanendon Cartwright, the former executive chairman of the authority, as part of the investigation.

But he said Cartwright was not under arrest.

He said, “We are not looking into a certain person.”

He told The Nassau Guardian that police have also spoken with several other people as part of the probe.

Deleveaux did not wish to disclose any further particulars surrounding the investigation or what the “alleged irregularities” are.

The Guardian previously reported that Cartwright was questioned by police.

The Davis administration has, on multiple occasions, raised concern over the issuance of contracts at the authority.

Shortly after coming to office in 2021, then-Minister of Works Alfred Sears said in Parliament that there was a “rash of contracts” issued by the authority shortly before the September 2021 election and that the contracts were issued without board approval.

“I’m only reporting what was reported to me as the responsible minister,” he said at the time.

“When the board is fully constituted, it will be a matter for the board of the authority to 

reconcile and then report to me as the responsible minister, and the issue of the inspectorate and the quality of the inspection and so on will be addressed.”

Last year, Bahamas Public Parks and Public Beaches Authority Chairman McKell Bonaby said he was alarmed over irregularities he discovered into the contracts issued by the authority under the Minnis administration.

“My question is, where were the checks and balances where these contracts did not meet the legal standards?” he asked in Parliament.

“When the contracts were brought to my attention, having reviewed them, I was of the view that they were personal contracts, considering that there was no area for the board secretary to sign and because the board secretary’s signature was not on any of the contracts. I thought they were personal contracts.

“This is alarming.”

But Cartwright has, on multiple occasions, defended his tenure.

He has, at every opportunity in the House, responded to the allegations made by the government.

In the House of Assembly last year, he said, “I deny and reject any suggestions or accusations that I participated in any willful wrongdoing or knew of any wrongdoing.”

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Travis Cartwright-Carroll

Travis Cartwright-Carroll is the news editor. He covers a wide range of national issues. He joined The Nassau Guardian in 2011 as a copy editor before shifting to reporting. He was promoted to news editor in January 2023.

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