MP denies kickback slur

photo

BAIN and Grants Town MP Travis Robinson.

By RASHAD ROLLE

Tribune Staff Reporter

rrolle@tribunemedia.net

BAIN and Grants Town MP Travis Robinson yesterday called a widely circulated allegation that he was caught receiving kickbacks from contractors a “total fabrication”.

The allegation was circulated on social media this week and involved accusations of extortion, claiming Mr Robinson, pictured, was called into a meeting with Deputy Prime Minister and Minister of Finance K Peter Turnquest over the weekend to discuss matters involving deposits to a bank account.

Mr Robinson and others in the Free National Movement (FNM) categorically denied yesterday any such meeting took place.

“The only comment I have to that is those comments are totally false,” Mr Robinson, 22, said. “They’re fabricated. They have no merit. I continue to work hard for the people inside my constituency. The government, the prime minister, stands behind the work I’ve done and we will see it through to completion.”

Press Secretary Anthony Newbold said yesterday that no review will be undertaken to investigate the matter.

“This is the political arena that we’re in,” Mr Robinson said. “I’ve heard a number of assertions during the course of my political journey. I’m not exempted from any political attack or nature of whatever allegation is out there. I stand firm that those statements are false.”

Asked if he ever extorted anyone, the first time MP said: “Absolutely not.”

Asked if he had authority to issue contracts to anyone, he said: “I won’t speak to whether or not I had authority to issue contracts in Bain Town but in reference to the specific issue, it’s false and fabricated.”

Asked about an alleged meeting with Mr Turnquest to address the claims, he said: “There was no meeting with the DPM on this issue. (The allegations) were a total shocker to me. I understand we’re in a political climate and the operators would do whatever is necessary to attack myself, my character and whatever it might be but I stand firm on my statement that this was fabricated.”

Mr Robinson said “should the need arise” he would take legal action against those perpetuating the falsehoods.

“I’m certainly open to it, but at this time my effort and energy will be continue to focus on Bain and Grants Town and I have no intention to run behind false accusations,” he said.

He said he found out about the allegations yesterday morning.

“Someone sent me a WhatsApp on it. I looked it and I simply laughed… I knew it was totally fabricated. I’m surprised to see the extent at which someone would go to tarnish or jeopardise someone.”

He noted that he spends his entire MP salary of $28,000 in his constituency.

“My MP salary in fact, I spend all of it inside the Bain and Grants Town constituency,” he said. “Many people would note the struggles Bain and Grants Town continues to have and I have committed myself personally to ensuring that my MP salary goes 100 per cent to my constituency.”

Comments

TalRussell says...

Comrades! The Tribune, before it blocks posts here should remember they helped to get elected a party promising full, open and complete public transparency. Red shirts must expect be publicly held to higher standards than the previous PLP administration - who were quick to the legal draw threatening libel suits to shut down discussion. Politicians are not a privileged bunch and should learn to respond without making threats shutdown the conversation - no matter how uncomfortably painful. This is not a legal question. It is big boys transparency question.

Posted 7 December 2017, 11:04 a.m. Suggest removal

Sickened says...

Tal, I have to disagree. The Tribune helped to get rid of the criminal organization know as the PLP - that is much different than trying to get the FNM elected. The FNM was and still is a MUCH better option, but the FNM is BY FAR a great option. So far I would give them a barely passing grade.

Posted 7 December 2017, 12:14 p.m. Suggest removal

DaGoobs says...

Which Bahamas are you living in? How did you arrive at the conclusion that the public are or will hold the current Minnis FNM administration to higher standards than they held the Christie PLP administration? Yes, the public's expectations are high but that's because the FNM propose to be more open, transparent and democratic than they claim the PLP were while in government. Threats of lawsuits are simply that, threats. There is nothing to fear from such threats, even if a lawsuit is actually filed, until you get to trial when it becomes a matter of what can each of the parties prove. The threat of a lawsuit by Mr Robinson arises from what he says is an untrue allegation made against him that if it is untrue amounts to libel and/or slander. This is not an issue of uncomfortable painful nests or even a big boys transparency question as in the cases of Frank Smith, Kendred Dorsett and Shane Gibson, but a question of truth: can or will the person/s making these anonymous allegations against Mr Robinson have the intestinal fortitude to step into the spotlight and prove the truthfulness of what they say? That is the real, true legal question.

Posted 7 December 2017, 5:46 p.m. Suggest removal

Socrates says...

in a democratic society, politicians are supposed to be servants of the people and accountable. it is not enough for this poltician to simply say its not true. whatever the charge, he must provide evidence to substantiate his innocence otherwise it would reasonable to assume where there is smoke, there is fire...

Posted 7 December 2017, 11:36 a.m. Suggest removal

licks2 says...

I don't have to answer you nothing. . .you say I teif. . .I say I did not! The burden of proof is on you there charlie. . .you show what I tief or shut ya mouth up!!

Posted 7 December 2017, 12:11 p.m. Suggest removal

Sickened says...

Socrates, I can't disagree more. If that were the case it would be far to easy to keep coming up with lies on someone and have them prove otherwise. Almost impossible to do day in, day out.

Posted 7 December 2017, 12:16 p.m. Suggest removal

realfreethinker says...

How do you find evidence for something that didn't happen. You can't be serious

Posted 7 December 2017, 3:48 p.m. Suggest removal

birdiestrachan says...

He will not speak to the issue of his authority to issue contracts Why not? he speaks of Janitorial salaries in a disrespectful manner and he says what he spend in Bains Town all he
has done so far is send some one to check the people there blood pressure. which he knows
is very high.. Social media got him where he is today and he can rest assured it will remove him from his perch,

How are the in door toilets progressing That was one of the things they used against the PLP.

Posted 7 December 2017, 11:36 a.m. Suggest removal

TalRussell says...

Comrades! Nothing do this particular MP, there is hot talk of another sitting red shirts MP about cross the House of Assembly floor..... will they sit as an Independent, or as the Green party's very first MP?

Posted 7 December 2017, 1:42 p.m. Suggest removal

stillwaters says...

Politicians should have realized by now that EVERYTHING come to light in this age of social media and leaking of information. Can't hide anything anymore. thank God. Didn't say he tief anything, buy if he did, evidence WILL surface. Somebody will leak the bank balances if it's true.

Posted 7 December 2017, 1:49 p.m. Suggest removal

TalRussell says...

Comrade StillWaters, social media is a dangerous tool hand people who take pride they's no deep freezes - we can't keep nothing we selves.

Posted 7 December 2017, 2 p.m. Suggest removal

stillwaters says...

Tal, politicians have been able to hide far too much for far too long and stolen far too much money from far too many contracts. Time for it to stop by any means necessary, until they (PLP and FNM) get the message that we are not going to let it continue without raising hell.

Posted 7 December 2017, 2:47 p.m. Suggest removal

DaGoobs says...

For a newspaper that prides itself on having been in business since 1903, the Tribune's reporting standards have really slipped. Social media has now become its "go-to" for so-called "news" instead of good old investigative journalism. The great beauty of social media, even the commentary facility on this website, is that I can sit at my computer, make all kinds of allegations and accusations against anyone I please and am not asked to nor need I provide one iota of proof that any of it is true. What contract/s and from whom is Robinson alleged to have demanded kickbacks? When and where did it occur? How much is involved? What does the Deputy Prime Minister have to say about the alleged meeting between him and Robinson on what has to have been the 2nd December? Rather than just rubber stamping anything on social media as true or partially true, the Tribune needs to investigate allegations made there to determine their truthfulness before rushing to print. Unlike coverage of Parliamentary proceedings, repetition of material on social media does not carry any immunities of its own nor does it qualify as justification.

Posted 7 December 2017, 6:13 p.m. Suggest removal

ThisIsOurs says...

It's a strange one for sure.. I think the story was "that story went viral". but you do kinda give it an iota of legitimacy by reporting that it went viral.

Posted 8 December 2017, 2:07 a.m. Suggest removal

sheeprunner12 says...

He makes his MP and his PS salary plus his allowances ........ Just post your I/E statement each month and show the critics that you are a millennial politician and not a SLOP-style whiffer.

Posted 7 December 2017, 6:21 p.m. Suggest removal

ThisIsOurs says...

I hope it's not true, he's too young for dis. And it would be hypocritical of the admin to be dragging three men through court for the very same thing but allow him to continue to serve.

Posted 8 December 2017, 2:04 a.m. Suggest removal

Required says...

The approach taken by the Minnis administration here is troublesome.

The junior MP claims that his entire MP salary goes to his constituency, yet from his declaration of assets upon nomination it is clear that he then would have no way to pay his own way. So what money is putting food in his mouth?

There are allegations of corruption against a redshirt, and the government's response is, "We ain't even going to look into dat!"?

It is clear that they have, from day 1, only seen transparency and anti-corruption as an anti-PLP measure, but not as a general principle that should guide them in government, too.

Posted 8 December 2017, 4:27 a.m. Suggest removal

Genus86 says...

He said he uses his entire "MP" Salary which is $28,000. I'm guessing he is living off of his Junior Minister salary which would be in addition to the $28,000.

Posted 8 December 2017, 8:47 a.m. Suggest removal

realfreethinker says...

You would be correct. He makes about $60,000. as a PS,but "Required" won't mention that because he/ she doesn't want the truth to interfere with the story.

Posted 8 December 2017, 8:57 a.m. Suggest removal

sheeprunner12 says...

Travis is 22 years old ....... He says he give will give back his MP salary and live off his PS salary ........ That is more than the 10% required by God ....... How many of us would do that?????? ......... We seem to be into the "Gotcha!!" gimmicks like the USA.......... Allegations cannot convict a person but it sure leaves character stains.

Posted 8 December 2017, 10:21 a.m. Suggest removal

BahamasForBahamians says...

It would be ridiculous and troublesome if Hubert does not prosecute this guy for corruption.

After all he has the same amount of evidence as past PLP cabinet ministers who have been charged in the courts: word of mouth. LOL

Posted 8 December 2017, 10:52 a.m. Suggest removal

ThisIsOurs says...

You're right...

Posted 8 December 2017, 2:08 p.m. Suggest removal

realfreethinker says...

You are one boongey hole. A real ass wipe.A political hack

Posted 8 December 2017, 2:45 p.m. Suggest removal

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