Auditor General notes $52m spent on unused DPP office

The content originally appeared on: Trinidad and Tobago Newsday

The unused office intended for the Director of Public Prosecutions (DPP) on Park Street, Port of Spain. FILE PHOTO/AYANNA KINSALE –

AUDITOR GENERAL Jaiwantie Ramdass made note of sums totalling more than $52 million that were spent on outfitting and renting an accommodation for the Office of the Director of Public Prosecutions (DPP) which was never used, in her Report of the Auditor General on the Public of Accounts of TT (2023) laid in the House of Representatives last Friday.

While money was spent to install bulletproof glass to the Park Street building, a request to build a protective wall was denied by the landlord, and the DPP never occupied it, to the ire of the Prime Minister who lamented the sizeable sums spent in vain.

The Auditor General Report said the exercise – now aborted – had involved the spending of $23 million on outfitting, plus $29 million on rent.

It said in 2023 the Office of the Attorney General spent $17,836 towards outfitting office accommodation in north Trinidad for the DPP, out of a total sum spent to outfit this office of $23,251,670.

“For financial year 2023, rent paid for this property was $5,625,000. The payment of rent was stopped with effect from September, 2023.

The total rent paid on this property for the period May 1, 2019–August 31, 2023 was $29,250,000.

“Up to the time the rent payment was stopped, the building remained unoccupied.”