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Antigua government withdraws knighthoods

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The Antigua & Barbuda government has withdrawn two of the knighthoods which it bestowed on two members of a delegation of the Sacred Military Constantinian Order of St. George, citing the need to “do a more detailed due diligence.”

The United Kingdom based newspaper “The Mail” said Governor General Sir Rodney Williams withdrew the honors bestowed on Nadhimi Auchi and Spas Roussev back in May this year.

A letter to Auchi, dated May 25, 2016, states; “As Grand Master of the Honors, I am herby withdrawing the honors bestowed upon you (to be a Knight Commander of the Most Distinguished Order of the Nation) until further notice.

Sir Rodney stated that the revocation was done, “after consultations with the prime minister” as laid out in Section 16 (of Statutory Instrument No 49 (of) l999, National Honors (Most Distinguished Order of the Nation).

The reason stated in the letter was “some information has come to our attention suggesting that we do a more detailed due diligence on the two persons on whom honors were bestowed on Nov. 2, 2014.”

A similar letter signed by Sir Rodney and also dated May 25 was sent to Spas Roussev.

Both Roussev and Auchi were members of the delegation headed by Sir Anthony Bailey who was also knighted on Nov. 2, 2014.

Sir Anthony, who heads the Sacred Military Constantinian Order of St. George, has been the subject of numerous allegations in the British media surrounding allegations that he and his delegation received the awards in exchange for money.

In June this year, Sir Anthony defended his citizenship and contribution to Antigua and Barbuda.

Sir Anthony said he obtained his Antigua & Barbuda citizenship early last year when he was appointed as a special economic envoy of Antigua and Barbuda to the States of the European Union (EU).

According to Sir Anthony, his Constantinian order donated $500,000 to assist with restoration work of the Anglican Cathedral and the Hatton Multipurpose Facility in Antigua.

The United Kingdom’s Daily Mail online publication reported that officials at Buckingham Palace were angered by Bailey’s insistence on being referred to as “Sir.”

Updated 3:05 am, July 10, 2018: An earlier version of this stated that the Governor General Sir Rodney Williams had "revoked" two knighthoods when in fact he had “withdrawn” the honours “until further notice.”
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