‘Lee Sing licence political meddling’
By SAVITRI SOOKRAJ
Minister of Science, Technology and Tertiary Education Hedwige Bereaux gave a directive to the Telecommunications Division of his Ministry to ensure a radio broadcast licence was provided to PNM supporter Louis Lee Sing, a source said yesterday.
The source alleged: “There was an order for it to be granted immediately, ahead of other applications.”
Saying this amounted to political interference, the source said Bereaux ordered that Lee Sing’s application be speeded up and in so doing, failed to adhere to the normal practices.
Lee Sing was granted a licence last week to operate on 95.5 FM.
This was just a few days after his company, Citadel Ltd, had a run-in with Tobago Broadcasting Service for use of the 92.5 FM frequency.
Prime Minister Patrick Manning and Bereaux have insisted no political favours were granted to Lee Sing.
However, while Lee Sing and Bereaux have said Citadel’s application was made on March 13, 2001, a company search showed the company was not incorporated until August 28, 2001.
Bereaux has refused to provide a copy of Citadel’s licence to reporters.
Lee Sing said yesterday he applied for a radio broadcast licence before incorporating the company, but that was not an unusual move.
He said he was forced to walk away from his investment at Power 102 FM because of the “machinations” of his former business partners, the Gillettes, who have strong political affiliations with the UNC.
Lee Sing said he is pursuing legal action on this issue.
“I know I did not stand a chance, like a snowball in hell, to get a licence under the UNC Basdeo Panday Government, which included Lindsay Gillette (then Minister of Energy),” he added.
He said at the same time, he was negotiating with Rene John-Sandy, one of the two directors at Tobago Broadcasting Systems (TBS) to manage 92.5FM.
“I knew ultimately I would have Citadel up and running,” he said.
Lee Sing said he got name recognition for Citadel, then applied for a radio licence and subsequently incorporated the company.
He said John-Sandy contracted him to manage the 92.5 frequency.
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