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Stephen Hobson (the centre) got a large commission from the RBDF boat deal it is alleged but most importantly in this photo he is surrounded by the people who recommended the deal former Commodore of the RBDF Roderick Bowe and former Permanent Secretary Carl Smith. Mr. Smith on the left and Mr. Bowe on the right.

The down market rag called The Punch, written and directed by ethically challenged and amoral Ivan Johnson, was at it again last week.  First he claimed that Senior PLPs were being investigated because a commission was paid to someone named Stephen Hobson for brokering the deal to Damen Shipyard in in the Netherlands to build the 9 new Defence Force boats. The truth is that the investigation is not one into any PLP official at all. The investigation is into Stephen Hobson. The PLP issued a statement saying the whole allegation was nonsense. The contract was the same one that the FNM approved and recommended by the same officials. Then not to be outdone, Ivan Johnson came back again to say that 42 million dollars was missing and unaccounted four in the contract. Again this is false. Loretta Butler Turner said that she had raised the fact that the boats were costing too much money when she was Leader of the Opposition and now she feels vindicated. Only thing is neither she nor Ivan Johnson know what they are talking about. The fact is there were additional works ordered. The FNM had bought two boats that couldn’t dock in their base in Coral Harbour. They also did not account for dredging Ragged Island at the base in Gun Point. They also needed two vessels refurbished and to build a brand new a roll on roll off emergency ship with hospital, kitchen and water making capability. That accounts for the full material difference in price and the fact is these were also fully approved and recommended by the same team the FNM left in place.