Dominica’s diplomatic passport not for sale PM Skerrit says

A diplomatic passport from Dominica

Prime Minister, Roosevelt Skerrit, has refuted allegations that diplomatic passports are being sold by the government.

He was responding to the issue which was raised in a CBS 60 Minutes program.

“The sale of diplomatic passports is not part of the citizenship by investment program, but it goes on under the table, particularly in Dominica which has had a most impressive corps of dodgy diplomats,” the script from the program reads.

Skerrit said Dominican diplomatic passports are not sold under any circumstances.

“We have said more than once that diplomatic passports are not sold under the CBI Programme or otherwise,” he said at a press conference on Wednesday. “We categorically refute the allegation that diplomatic passports are being sold by this Government as alleged or at all. It is regrettable that even in the face of constant denial and complete lack of any evidence that Mr. (Lennox) Linton would persist and insist on repeating his lies that such a practice exists.”

He added, “Over the years we have had many outstanding non-Dominicans offer their services free of charge to Dominica in their countries of origin. They have served as our Ambassadors and Trade Investment Commissioners, in parts of the World where we are unable to be represented by Nationals. In a few instances one or two of those persons have found themselves at odds with the law, but this was never prior to or known to me or the Government before we considered them. On the very rare occasions when this occurred, immediate action was taken to revoke their appointments as appropriate.”

In the CBS program, three individuals were named as allegedly having diplomatic passports and Skerrit said he was going to respond to all of them.

First off, it was said that Bahamian Rudolph King had been issued a Diplomatic passport and appointed Ambassador to Bahrain. Ladies and Gentlemen…that is a lie.,” the Prime Minister said. Rudolph King never applied for or was ever granted a passport of any sort, whether service, official or diplomatic, by the government of Dominica. Rudolph King was never appointed ambassador to Bahrain.The Government of Dominica has refuted this allegation by Linton on several occasions over the past 12 years, yet he persists in repeating it. This time, on international television.”

He called on Linton to “shut up” on the matter.

“I call on Lennox Linton one more time, to put up or shut up! To Lennox Linton I say – Provide evidence of Rudolph King having been issued a Dominica passport or having been appointed Ambassador to Bahrain. If you cannot do this, then do the decent thing and apologize to the people of Dominica,” he stated.

Skerrit also addressed the issue of Francisco Corallo, who was nominated to be Dominica’s ambassador to the Food and Agricultural Organization (FAO).

“Secondly, Linton claims that attempts were made to appoint Francisco Corallo to the FAO, while he was on an international crime watch list. This again, is a lie,” he said. “In June of 2011, the Government of Dominica wrote to the Italian government requesting a no-objection to the appointment of Corallo as its representative to the FAO. The Italian government was concerned in about October/ November 2011 that Corallo had considerable business interests in Italy, and was not comfortable agreeing to him becoming a Diplomat at the FAO. That was the right of the Italian Government to do, and this put an end to the matter. At this time Corallo was recognized as a successful business man, and was at this time, given in 2011, a clean bill of health by the Ministry of the Interior and Foreign Affairs of Italy. . It was almost a full year later that reports surfaced of Corallo’s name appearing on an international watch list. By this time, the pursuit of his appointment had already ended, because of Italy’s concern about his expansive business operations in that country. The Italian authorities never once made reference to any concerns about his integrity, alleged criminal background or watch list.”

He continued, “So it was false and malicious of Lennox Linton to give the impression that at the time of the Government’s request for Italy’s consent to his appointment, Corallo was on an international watch list. That was simply not true. The facts, as made public before, clearly shows that the correspondence to Italy was dispatched in June 2011, and Corallo’s name first appeared on an international watch list in late 2012. Incidentally, Corallo has to date not been convicted of any major crime, as suggested by the program on Sunday. So that is lie number 2.”

Then there is the matter concerning Diezani Alison- Madueke, which was much discussed in Dominica.

“The third person of interest named by Linton on Sunday was Diezani Alison- Madueke, a former Head of the Organisation of Petroleum Exporting Countries and senior Minister of the Government of Nigeria. Alison-Madueke was also The recipient of Forbes Magazine’s Best of Africa Award In leadership. This is the sterling record which Alison-Madueke had when I invited her to serve as a voice and face of Dominica in Africa, a continent that lies untapped to most countries in the region,” Skerrit said. “It was some time after I spoke to Alison-Maduake that she was approached by British authorities and detained for questioning in the United Kingdom. She has up to this day, not been charged with any crime and is not wanted by any country. She currently resides in London, England, a free woman. However, when the news broke of her detention, the Government of Dominica voiced its concerns publicly and made clear that its association with Alison-Madueke was suspended until such time as she was cleared of all suspicion of wrong doing. As I said earlier, to date no charges have been brought, but still the Government of Dominica has no connection with the former international figure, based on the concerns as expressed back then by the British authorities.”

He added, “So, again, it was downright wrong and misleading of Lennox Linton to suggest, one, that the government of Dominica had approached her; knowing her to be a criminal, and also that the Government of Dominica had never commented on her detention. Nothing could be further from the truth, as an official statement on the matter was promptly issued.”

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28 Comments

  1. Shepherd's voice
    April 10, 2017

    I have a Citizenship by Investment passport. I underwent a rigorous application process which included full disclosure of my finances (I had to prove I was fully compliant with all tax laws, had no delinquent debts, and were fully solvent/gainfully employed); a full government/police background check; medical exams; professional references; and a personal interview by Dominican government officials . I hoped that the fee would be used to benefit the people and economy of Dominica and am deeply saddened to hear otherwise. It is also disturbing to think that disreputable individuals may have allegedly been granted passport privileges. No one should be granted a passport without undergoing the extensive background check that I did. Dominicans have a right to assurances that only people of good character are issued passports, as well as a right to know how much revenue is generated by CBI and how it is being spent. CBI can be a win-win program with more transparency. God bless you.

  2. jonathan st jean
    January 9, 2017

    Tony Astaphan tell us you lie.Money from sale of diplomatic passports went into Labor Party election campaign.You gave Tony permission to speak on your behalf

  3. Verified
    January 7, 2017

    Lie 1 – It was reported by the Bahrain News Agency, a government institution that they received Rudolph King, Special Envoy of the Prime Minister of the Commonwealth of Dominica.

    Reference
    http://bna.bh/portal/photos/284897/284898

    Lie 2- The PM stated the “The Italian authorities never once made reference to any concerns about his integrity, alleged criminal background or watch list.” This is very misleading. Concerns about Corallo’s integrity were raised when the Italian authorities “raided” his home on 10 November, 2011.

    As a matter of fact Corallo used the fact that he was a diplomat on behalf of Dominica to evade prosecution.

    References:
    http://dominicanewsonline.com/news/homepage/news/crime-court-law/francesco-corallo-arrested-in-st-maarten/

    http://www.prweb.com/releases/2013/12/prweb11447200.htm

    Lie 3-It’s interesting that no dates were given for appointment of Diezani Alison- Madueke.

    Reference:
    http://sundominica

  4. January 7, 2017

    Why would you believe that the United States Government and Law Enforcement Agencies needed Lennox Linton to “inform” them about the CBI Program or any other Government run program in Dominica? The United States with it’s FBI, CIA, NSA, ICE and how many other “alphabet agencies” knows when someone is talking on their cell phone in North Korea or Afghanistan from an office in Virginia or Washington, but they needed Linton to tell them what’s happening in Dominica right??? We Dominicans need to stop acting so naive and realize that the ONLY reason that CBS did a segment on passport selling in the Caribbean is because the United States Authorities have concerns about these programs. It is definitely not because they were contacted by Linton and wanted to give Linton a chance to bring LOCAL DOMINICAN POLITICS to the world! Linton is being used as a scapegoat to cover up our Government’s shady diplomatic appointments! Point blank.

  5. January 7, 2017

    I honestly believe that a majority of, if not all, Dominicans at home and abroad are fully aware that the Prime Minister, Roosevelt Skerrit, is a pathological liar. Yet, he continues to mislead and misguide a few thousand loyal supporters having them believe that it took one man in the person of the Leader of the Opposition, Mr. Lennox Linton, to make the United States Government and Law Enforcement Agencies aware that there are some serious flaws in Dominica’s Passport Selling Programs. Using Linton as a scapegoat, this Prime Minister believes that he can cover up his own refusal to appear before the CBS Cameras. More importantly, the Prime Minister knows that the U.S. Authorities are clamping down on his shady Diplomatic appointments and this might very well bring and end to his cash cow. No more money to bribe and import voters, the Prime Minister’s strategy would be to bring about extreme economic hardships on Dominica and place the blame on Linton believing that that hate of…

  6. Liar, liar. Pants on fire
    January 6, 2017

    Fellow Dominicans, the TRUTH is STUBBORN. Cornered like a mad, bad dog, found LYING time and time again,, and now that the international communities against corruption, money-laundering, fraud, bribery and other such crimes,like terrorism etc., expect the few who benefit, the nouveau riche,- outrage, growling, biting, more twisting of the truth.

    Is it by coincidence that so many of those foreigners who possess our diplomatic passports are all very rich people, millionaires, billionaires, but are questionable characters, like NG Lap Seng and are in trouble, big trouble, with the Law, either in the US, in Italy, in England, Nigeria, name it?

    Who are the LIARS? WHO are the TRAITORS? Who has been speaking the TRUTH TO POWER all the time, for a long time? who has sullied, dirtied the name of Dominica?

    http://saharareporters.com/2015/12/18/ex-nigerian-oil-minister-plotted-flee-commonwealth-dominica-uk

  7. Fact
    January 6, 2017

    Why are there so many issues with all these individuals. There’s no smoke without fire Mr. PM

  8. Concerned Dominican
    January 5, 2017

    If CBS is spreading lies and propaganda which can be proven to be false, then the Government of Dominica should take them to court for damaging the reputation of the LEGITIMATE CBI PROGRAM!! Then, upon winning your case based on facts, our country should be smiling all the way to the bank! It will also boost the reputation of the Dominica CBI program!

    So why not?? Sue CBS for their allegations!! Let’s see what comes of it in court!!

  9. jenner james
    January 5, 2017

    stop thinking of what happen to dominica passport and how much skerrit lying and time to think of getting your passport for heaven people. Shrist coming is sooner than we think.

    • jenner james
      January 5, 2017

      Christ is coming soon (I made my corrections english teachers)

      • Me
        January 8, 2017

        Think you made a subconscious lip there Jenner. You started off spelling Christ with the capital S. Perhaps People like you believe the second coming is already here in no other person than Skrit, who himself believes is the anointed one.

        Like or Dislike: Thumb up 1 Thumb down 0
  10. Eagledeyez
    January 5, 2017

    ??

  11. Dave Bertrand
    January 5, 2017

    The only people Skerrit can fool are Dumbinicans. Lennox Linton has put his case forward on the CBS 60 minutes programme. If El Supremo is so adamant that Linton is telling lies why don’t he use this
    CBS 60 minutes programme to refute these lies? Let the truth set us free Mr Prime Minister. If you have nothing to hide be a man and not a Zaman!

  12. %
    January 5, 2017

    I believe CBS,,,i do not believe Skerrit…Instead of HIDING,he should have appeared on the show and defend himself…Stop taking all of us for your fools,when so many of us are smarter than you. So happy that the international community now knows what’s going on with our passports.

  13. Liar, liar. Pants and panties on fire
    January 5, 2017

    who is the real pathological LIAR. Even when the TRUTH stare us right in the face, denial, denial, denial.

    So whose FOOLS are Dominicans, Due diligence with all those foreigners, with our diplomatic passports, yet those very same people, some in jail, some arrested, some under anti-corruption and anti-money-laundering surveillance. nobody made up those stories. There are tons of evidence to prove those people have problems with the law. the world knows that.

    Who handed those diplomatic passports? Is it the appropriate Ministry or somebody in Govt or an affiliate of.. how comes rubbing shoulders with millionaires and billionaires, but they did not buy passport? What happened, those persons did not buy, but exchanged something for the passports?

    How quickly the woman from Nigeria, the former Minister, was handed her diplomatic passport and diplomatic post. She was arrested in London, So by coincidence more than one of them with our passports either in jail or…

  14. Jon Jones
    January 5, 2017

    Clearly the fact that several monied persons of dubious backgrounds are being associated with Dominican diplomatic passports should be a cause for concern. I wont bother with a list of names but there is clearly a pattern emerging so whoever wants to play stupid can do so at their own peril.

    Is there a full list of CBI clients available? It would be interesting to see who these clients really are? I wouldn’t be suprised to find a few fakes among them despite the PM’s talk of all due diligence being taken. Please prove me wrong

  15. doctor
    January 5, 2017

    well i guess the 400 000 us dollars received by susan before the 2005 general elections was a gift and not payment for receiving 2 diplomatic passports.

  16. January 5, 2017

    I wish Mr Linton would contact CNN and then BBC, because its only that will keep those parasites in check :-D :-D

  17. Helas!
    January 5, 2017

    It is interesting to listen to the pm and tony and vince and the others and now i can say tell lies.

    I went online and listened to the CBS 60 minutes program and found nothing of that sort, I trust the pm even less now seeing the brazen lies when he could have been on the program defending what he thinks.

    I guess the pm remain as a little boy hiding behind tony and cannot face the truth.

    I only hope America or Europe will not make it even more difficult for our citizens.

    I also urge persons to read and listen for yourselves , you cannot trust the food you are being fed by others, especially on kairi.
    It is so sad to see Dominica going this way!! but the greedy will justify evil. i saw a photo of one of them in that video for passport sales, if you look you will see him and you will understand even more.

  18. January 5, 2017

    Lie, you hear lie, your senior consel let the cat out of the bag

  19. Practical
    January 5, 2017

    Hey,

    You are such a liar that when you tell the truth it cannot be taken serious. Dominicans cannot trust you Mr. Pm. So why is it that Four of the persons granted Diplomatic passports were in trouble with the law. Man either you have a taste for criminals or you just bad at the practice of awarding Diplomatic passports. Dominicans will never know the full extent of what you “boys’ are doing. The truth will be revealed when you are booted out of office. BEWARE!!!!!!!!!!

  20. January 5, 2017

    Sorry PM I don’t trust or believe anything you say. E.g. why was Mr N G Lap Sen provided with a Diplomatic passport? What about the Chinese lady Grace somebody who allegedly bought a DA diplomatic passport.? What about our so called ambassador to China, most Da folks do not officially know that man is our rep in China.
    We have reps in countries that most Da folks do not even know exist, Why

    An reasonably intelligent person may surmise that this may be to possibly cover certain nefarious activities/dealings!!!!!!

    • Jenner Trim, LLB
      January 5, 2017

      Diplomatic passports are NOT sold. People pay the money and then Dr. Skerrit decides whether to give them the passport. Payment of the money does not guarantee the passport. Everybody knows that, so please get your facts right.

      • Tjebe fort
        January 7, 2017

        Jenner, you really believe people would give the honorary doctor hard cash for nothing in return? Grow up!

        Well-loved. Like or Dislike: Thumb up 4 Thumb down 0
  21. FORKIT
    January 5, 2017

    your pants on fire…

    • January 5, 2017

      The heat is on and it was long coming because all along Skerrit could do whatever he want and not report to any one well it’s not so any more thanks to CBS .

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