Prime Minister Roosevelt Skerrit is distancing his administration from a controversial Malaysia-based website, www.mydominicatradehouse.com, and company My Dominica Trade House, which have been the subjects of much discourse in some quarters in Dominica recently.
Speaking on the Next Level Program last weekend, the Prime Minister said the website and company have no formal agreements with the Government, are not agents of the island’s Economic Citizenship program, are not affiliated with any state entity or with him personally or the Dominica Labour Party (DLP).
Skerrit said the website and the company My Dominica Trade House came about as a result of a “gentleman” who became a Dominican citizen through the Citizenship by Investment Program and who feels passionate about the island.
“Because the guy feels so passionately about Dominica, he uses his own money to pay staff and to pay researchers to help promote Dominica,” he said. “All the guy is doing is to fetch economic opportunities for our country, to promote in a positive way our country, to seek to mobilize resources so we can invest in our country and create a better way of life for our citizens.”
The matter was first brought up by talk show host, Angelo Allen, after the website showed government officials in Malaysia but no reports were made to Dominicans about the trip.
“Why didn’t any of them say a word to us in Dominica?” he told DNO. “That is the question … it is not about how ungrateful we are, it’s about the responsibility of the Prime Minister and all those other government officials to tell the citizens of this country what it is they are doing supposedly on behalf of us the people of Dominica.”
The site was taken down when the matter was made public but is now back online.
Allen said there are many unanswered questions such as: who paid for the trip to Malaysia? Were these public servants paid an allowance for every day spent out of the country?
He would also like the air cleared on allegations of “five My Dominica Trade House Medical centers in Dominica.”
But Skerrit is of the view that Dominicans should follow the example of the Malaysian man, who name was not revealed, in promoting a positive image of Dominica via social media instead of giving negative comments, attacking and trying to black eye the island.
“Let us appreciate how we would all have in the world a positive image of Dominica,” he said, adding that instead of this, the Opposition United Workers Party (UWP) is “seeking to create all sorts of dark clouds, all sorts of innuendoes, all sorts of unfair criticisms of this and giving it the impression that it is a holding company of Roosevelt Skerrit, it is a holding company of the Labour Party.”
He insisted that this is not the case.
“What holding company? Go on the website and see…” he said.
However, Allen is not satisfied with the explanation.
“What does that have to do with anything? We are not talking about that man at all,” he stated. “They have tried to move the conversation about an Iranian man and how ungrateful we are. It’s about why didn’t the Prime Minister tell us that he was doing all those great things with this great guy over there.”
He continued, “And if it is a man who is spending his money so badly, he loves Dominica, what is in it for him?”
According to www.mydominicatradehouse.com, My Dominica Trade House, is a company that is based in Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia, with three local companies in Dominica.
These companies, the site says, provides limousine taxi services, aqua prawn farming facility and energy solution that they are completely based on green energy. They are also operating a spring water bottle plant, a business and consultancy management company that will assist the citizenship and passport applications for different countries including Dominica and managing valuable client’s assets.
The site further revealed that as they continue to expand, their upcoming projects and services in Dominica will be investing and managing a five-star hotel resort and a Students Exchange Program.
“MDTH is here to make opportunities for those who are bold enough to make to first move and profit from it,” the website stated.
The Opposition United Workers Party (UWP) has also been vocal on the matter and will be holding a public meeting at Weirs Flat in Marigot on Wednesday 10th June 2015 to discuss it.
It will be held under the theme: Connect the passport dots.