By Khrisna Russell
Deputy Chief Reporter
TWO days before financial disclosures were to be submitted, the deadline has been extended to March 31, Public Disclosure Commission Chairman Myles Laroda said yesterday, telling The Tribune the decision was based on challenges the PDC faced.
According to Mr Laroda, letters sent on behalf of the commission were not mailed to members of Parliament, senators and other government officials until January, which he called a delay.
In addition, there are some first time MPs who are from the Family Islands and who face problems in gathering the needed documents.
As a result, Mr Laroda said yesterday the commission has decided to extend more time to those people.
When he spoke to The Tribune just two days earlier, the PDC chairman said he had no reason to believe the deadline would not be met.
This was echoed last week by Press Secretary Anthony Newbold who said everyone was on target to meet the mandated timeline of March 1.
“The Public Disclosure Commission continues to meet and the chairman is comfortable with where he is at this point,” Mr Newbold said previously.
“Of course we have to wait until the actual deadline arrives to see exactly what is happening, but up to this point everybody is preparing to be ready to meet the deadline.”
Late last year, Mr Laroda said the commission had met several times and was still in the process of reviewing various 2016 and 2017 filings.
Back in December, Mr Laroda said neither he nor his unit could address any issues with filings from the 2016 and 2017 periods, or the government’s self-imposed deadline to prosecute delinquent public officials under the Public Disclosure Act.
There was a July 3, 2017, timeline set by Prime Minister Dr Hubert Minnis for the files on delinquent disclosures to be sent to the Office of the Attorney General, however no action was ever taken against persons who fell in this category.