Dr. Rudolph “Rudy” Matthias, CEO of International Airport Development Company. (Photo: AIA/Facebook)

Head of the International Airport Development Company (AIDC), Rudolph “Rudy” Matthias has lashed out at the parliamentary opposition over its criticisms of the operation of the state-owned company.

Speaking on Thursday at a ceremony where U.S.-based Vincentians donated US$10,000 to the project, Matthias responded to allegations that the airport was being constructed without contractors.

The EC$700 million airport, which has been under construction for seven years, has missed completion targets annually since 2011.

It is now scheduled to open by year-end, a target that the main opposition New Democratic Party (NDP) and other observers — citing the scope of works to be done — have said the project is likely to miss.

Matthias said the IADC has to reflect on some of the criticism made of the AIDC and the government to see if they are of merit.

But he said statements in Parliament recently that there are no contractors at Argyle are not true.

He noted that the terminal building and electrical substation were constructed under contracts awarded to Overseas Engineering and Construction Company of Taiwan.

Innotech Services Ltd. from Barbados, which also won a contract in a competitive process, built the fire station, Matthias said.

Franco Construction built the base of the control tower and Innotech Services Ltd. is executing a contract to build the cargo terminal.

“So those persons who, under the cover of parliamentary privilege, would shoot off their mouth and say things like somehow Rudy Matthias is issuing contracts, underhand contracts, here and there really – in fact, I want to challenge them that if they think we are doing something wrong at Argyle, they shouldn’t say so in the house of Parliament.

“They should say so on their radio station, so we can ask them to provide the evidence of what they are saying. I would be happy to ask them to provide the evidence,” Matthias said.

“All of these contracts were done after competitive bidding, and all of these contracts were awarded by a board,” he told the media.

“So this idea that some people seem to have that there is this superman name Rudy Matthias, who, they claim, is singlehandedly managing the Argyle International Airport, and, presumably also, singlehandedly doing everything and awarding the contracts, can’t be further from the truth,” he said.

“It is amazing that someone who professes to be an expert and a consultant on things like management will make such an outlandish statement.”

Matthias said that the IADC has a “large and distinguished board of directors”, which, with 16 members, is probably the largest in the country.

He said critics sometimes mention Jennifer Richardson, the IADC’s communications officer.

“Well, there has to be someone who speaks on behalf of the company. Well we hired a communications officer to do that and there are some issues on which I, as CEO, must speak.

“Now, if they want us — and I hate to get into politics, but if they are going to draw me into it, I might as well step in. If they want us, or if they want me to run IADC in the same disorganised way they manage the so-called NDP, I wouldn’t do that.

“We will have designated people speaking on behalf of the IADC. It will be me or Jennifer. So we are not going to have in the public domain stories about we will do this today and someone else from the party saying we will do that tomorrow.

“We are a professional group, we are not a ragtag bunch. So, please, don’t bring us, drag us into your mess. We are a professional unit,” Matthias said.

8 replies on “Airport company not run ‘in the same disorganised way’ as NDP – Matthias”

  1. I am really Surprised , that C. ben David & Peter Binose have not yet appeared here . It seems to me that they are Slipping or Asleep . Let me repeat , if the NDP during its governance of
    Cricket in the Region , had built an International Airport , it is possible that it would have been in
    the governance of SVG longer .

    BTW , the cost of building it would have been much less than it is currently is , WE would have had more development in SVG ; including Hotels etc . Unfortunately , the NDP , did nothing of the sort . I do recall Pronouncement being made of the Grenadines seceding from St. Vincent . Instead WE have a Market , in the middle of the Town , that has Passenger &
    Freight Elevators that do not & cannot work . Frankly the building is more akin to being a
    Mausoleum than a Market , due to the fact that it lacks light . Perhaps this is why Vendors
    who have stalls in the Market prefer to sell their produce outside . But I digressed .

    The Argyle Airport is nearing completion , and that has spawned a lot of Criticism from Opposition Parties ; no doubt because they are fearful that they will be trounced at the Polls
    on Election Day . Lost on those who oppose the Argyle Airport is the fact , that the Airport is not being built only for Members of the ULP , it is being built for ALL VINCENTIANS , especially for those of us in the Diaspora who have to face & interact with the Uncouth Louts
    at the Grantley Adams Airport in Barbados .

    Let me again also state , a well known fact . NO ONE with Business Acumen , will build a Hotel in any Country that does not have an International Airport , that being the case those
    who stupidly talk about not having Hotels , are brainless Idiots . Perhaps they may have seen
    a Cart pulling a Donkey , personally I have never seen that .

    VERIDICAL

  2. How dare this little jumped up twerp and employee of the Vincentian people. People who have been committed to repaying a debt that he himself has subscribed towards by his inept stupidity. How dare this man come forward and have a political agenda, to make political statements.

    Mathias tell the people if it’s true that you and your wife had a company formed to buy up land adjacent to the airport […]

  3. Ladies and gentlemen, the Comedy show is about to begin. Lets sit and await the main comedian : C. ben-David

  4. Listen to this big joker.If the Argyle Airport was being constructed in a professional manner I don,t believe that it would have miss so much completion dates.It would have been more transparent and no one would have refer to it as their title deed.the NDP is more organised than the ULP and the IADC that is why despite all the challenges, the NDP is still going strong.After this coming elections the ULP will be no more.The ULP is made up of Ralph,Julian and Camillo.You and all the others are just there to be used by them because the three of them can,t run in all the constituencies.

  5. So Mr. Matthias,
    Are you still promising us the airport will be open by year end? You didn’t say otherwise, so I am believing you still mean to stick with that date.
    Did you actually mean open as in not shut? Operational? Or just having a ceremony where you take pictures, cut a ribbon say “Open Sesame’ everybody drink and be merry, celebrate, then roll the equipment and workers out to continue the job of building the airport? How many aeroplanes did you say?
    Just for clarification Mr. Matthias – Year end is December 31, 2015. That leaves us exactly 123 days after today. This includes weekends and holidays. So starting at midnight tonight through to midnight on December 31, 2015, we have 123 days, or we can say we have 2,952 hours, or if we like bigger numbers we can say 177,120 minutes, or even bigger numbers 10,627,200 seconds. Still 123 days. You have made that committment Mr. Matthias, so later on we don’t want to hear about miscalculations – I have calculated it for you, see above; nor do we want to hear about time off for holidays or weekends, because you did not tell that to the country when you made the year end promise. So Mr. Matthias, as a proud Vincentian I would like to be home at 12:01 AM on January 01, 2016. Can you please tell me the name of the airline that I should contact? Doesn’t matter where it is originating, I can get there by “direct flight.”
    I think, Mr. Matthias, that you better stop the fighting and mudslinging between you and the NDP and get to work. Time is a-wasting. That kind a talking ain’t geting no work done. Nuff said, I hope.

  6. This man has no shame. At the very least, he should keep quiet about political rhetoric from the opposition. If he does reply, it should not be with such silly histrionics.

  7. Patrick Ferrari says:

    The Argyle International airport project is the longest running political campaign – anywhere, everywhere.

    Rudy Matthias, the ultimate professional – if you listen to him – has used taxpayers’ money – which includes money from the hapless Green and Yellow taxpayer as well – and foreign grants to advertise, politicize; and, ultimately, to usurp the Argyle International Airport to campaign for the ULP. He used it like if it was a religious experience. (Who knows, perhaps, to him, it is.) He has used and allowed (as if he had a choice) and continue to use and allow (as if he has a choice) ULP campaign material for that job: the party’s “Me Naaah Tun Back logo; its “I AM LABOUR” stickers; the “VOLT ULP” banners; and he flies the omnipotent red flag. AS the project’s CEO, he campaigns for the ULP, day in day out, year in year out, with the party’s campaign material on the equipment, on the site.

    Now, conveniently, he “hate to get into politics.” Maybe he is being honest, though. Maybe he was never into politics. Maybe as a professional, he never favoured the politicking of the project. Maybe he is simply a spineless professional who needed and needs a job and has to be unprofessionally servile, unethically sycophantic and obey his political puppeteers regardless of their blatant lack of morals and principles that he, too, has to mirror – like a faithful servant. Moreover, their lawless ways as well.

    Mathias is a professional in that he belongs to a profession but is not a worthy professional person because, at Argyle, he does not ensure the highest (oh gawd, we have some leeway with that) professional standards of competence (tell me again when the airport is opening – again) and ethical integrity.

    The puppet masters chose well; Mathias is a professional “ragtag” puppet. He is the personification of “monkey cyarn see he own tail.” Which is okay with me – until he sticks it in my face.

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