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Government will fire a board member and another staff of the state-owned
Guyana Oil Company Limited (GUYOIL) over the fuel scandal and the alleged $600M kickback.
Speaking at a news conference at State House on Wednesday President Irfaan Ali was sure that no fraud was committed as part of the scandal which involved a fuel importer and top officials at the oil company. He said however, persons who have had inappropriate contact with the importer will be removed.
Akani Blair, an official of the ANUG party as well as a staff, Shawn Persaud are the two officials identified for sacking.
Two weeks ago when the scandal came to light Finance Minister, Dr Ashni Singh said he had called in the Auditor General Deodat Sharma to investigate allegations involving Aaron Realty Inc. (ARI) and Guyoil.
In a statement, GuyOil’s Board Chairman Paul Cheong had dispelled allegation that the oil company contracted Aaron Realty Inc. (ARI) to supply the state owned fuel company with fuel.
“There is absolutely no truth to this allegation,” Cheong said.
However, he admitted that Aaron Realty Inc. was among companies which were shortlisted. “GUYOIL wishes to categorically state that whilst ARI was one of a number of companies which GUYOIL had discussions on the possible supply of fuel, GUYOIL has not at any time entered into a contract with ARI,” the Chairman of the state-owned fuel company clarified.
In the interest of transparency and public disclosure, GUYOIL disclose the pre-requisite procedures in place for the procurement of fuel from any entity. These procedures include competitive procurement; due diligence of the supplying company; purchase order/contract; nominated quantity sent to supplier with expected date of delivery; Quality & Quantity Surveyor Appointed to overlook the loading of the Cargo; and Certificate of Quality/conformity with Technical Specification produced.
The allegation comes even as GUYOIL’s General Manager Jagmohan Bassoo tendered his resignation.
“Mr. Bassoo offered his resignation to the company and the Board of Directors has accepted his resignation. In the interim, a sub-committee of the Board of Directors has been appointed to oversee the day-to-day operations of the Company,” the company said.
In a post on his Facebook page, Bassoo rejected claims that he was being sent on administrative leave in light of alleged corruption at GUYOIL.
“I wish to state that is INCORRECT. I also wish to advise that I have chosen to and have submitted my resignation to the Chairman and Board of Directors,” he clarified.
He added: “Friends, family and well-wishers, please do not be misguided by propaganda. I intend to solicit legal advice after which I will provide more information. Thank you for the love and support that I have received over the past few hours. You have all given me strength to fight this unnecessary battle.”
Meanwhile, the Board of Directors of GUYOIL has assured the public that at all times the company will act in compliance with the Laws of Guyana and best practices as it relates to conducting its business.