Prime Minister Ralph Gonsalves. (IWN file photo)

The manager of a local radio station which last year paid Prime Minister Ralph Gonsalves EC$206,000 for defamation, has apologized to him for a news article the station broadcast on Jan. 17.

Douglas De Frietas, manager of NICE Radio, wrote Gonsalves on Tuesday, saying that broadcaster Laverne Phillips and Deion Allen “out of ignorance inadvertently broadcasted (sic) news originated from Barbados Free Press” on NICE Radio’s 4 p.m. and 5 p.m. newscasts.

The article stated that Gonsalves, who is chair of LIAT’s shareholder government, owns two of the airline’s aircraft.

“This information has no basis of truth. I have spoken to both broad castors (sic) and they have asked to convey that they are truly sorry for their grave error,” De Freitas wrote.

De Freitas said that he apologized to Gonsalves on Jan. 20, offered the apology on air, and will do so via local newspapers.

LIAT in a statement on Tuesday, said that the Barbados Free Press report was erroneous.

“These statements are reckless and mischievous. Such reports negatively impact the travelling public, our Caribbean community constituents, and the staff of our airline. LIAT distances itself from these unverified reports and remains committed to channelling our energies into our modernization programme and to putting LIAT on a profitable footing,” acting CEO of LIAT, Julie Reifer-Jones, said in the statement.

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