In Parliament on September 29, Gopeesingh alleged Narace used his Cabinet post in order to siphon millions worth of contracts to Trinre, which he said held a portfolio of $100 million. Gopeesingh, the Opposition’s shadow Health Minister revealed the Narace family ties to Trinre via two shareholder companies: Investment Managers Limited (IML) and SIGMA Investment Promotion.
He disclosed that Narace’s wife Rani Lakhan-Narace, who has been the Trinre executive chairman since 2001, as well as his daughter Vasha, son Vinai and brother Ojaran Narace are directors of IML, which has an 86 percent shareholding in Trinre.
The Health Minister later denied the allegation and on October 2, read a letter in Parliament penned by his wife and addressed to House Speaker Barry Sinanan. “Let me state emphatically that since the appointment of Jerry Narace as Minister of Health on November 12, 2007, Trinre has not written insurance with respect to any new client from the state sector,” Mrs Narace said, through her husband.
In the Senate on November 4, UNC A Senator Dr Adesh Nanan alleged that buses, used to transport PNM supporters to Woodford Square on the occasion of debate on a no-confidence motion against Prime Minister Patrick Manning, were insured by Trinre.
Lakhan-Narace subsequently said Trinre insures the buses of the Public Service Transport Corporation, but this arrangement pre-dated her husband’s appointment as a minister. Newsday later exclusively reported in its November 11 edition that Trinre currently provides $3.5 million worth of insurance to the Trinidad and Tobago Electricity Commission (TTEC) for one of its refurbishment projects.
According to company documents dated March of this year, Trinre issued two separate policies to L&L Contractors Limited, a company based at Avocat Road, Fyzabad. TTEC is listed alongside L&L Contractors as a policy-holder for both policies. Lakhan-Narace subsequently pointed out that some insurance policies between Trinre and other companies are renewed from time to time and are, as such, not necessarily new contracts. She repeated earlier statements that Trinre does not do any business directly with the State but through brokers. “We do not have any special relationship with any client,” Lakhan-Narace said. Documents relating to both the TTEC contract and the PTSC contracts have been lodged with the Integrity Commission.