Georgetown, Guyana – (December 23, 2015) Cabinet has instructed Minister of Finance, Mr. Winston Jordan to send Chief Executive Office of the National Industrial and Commercial Investments Limited (NICIL), Mr. Winston Brassington; and Deputy Chief Executive Officer, Mrs. Marcia Nadir-Sharma; on immediate leave, while the audit reports are being forwarded to the police and the Special Organised Crime Unit for investigations.
“Cabinet mandated that the Minister of Finance gives instructions for the transaction audit of NICIL to be conducted and that to facilitate all of these things, that the CEO and the DCEO be sent on administrative leave immediately pending the outcome of the actions that have to be taken,” said Minister of State, Joseph Harmon, at this week’s post Cabinet press briefing, which was held at the Ministry of the Presidency this morning.
Additionally, Cabinet has asked that Minister Jordan hands over a copy of the audit reports to Commissioner of Police, Mr. Seelall Persaud and the Special Organised Crime Unit (SOCU) for investigations to determine whether there were any acts of criminality committed by those concerned.
“Cabinet considered the comprehensive report of the audits of the operations of NICIL that was submitted by the Consultant, Dr. Anand Goolsarran, as well as a set of recommendations on the report submitted by the Minister within the Ministry of Finance, Jaipaul Sharma. Cabinet considered the importance of the decisions that had to be made with respect to NICIL and the far reaching consequences of the recommendations of both the Minister and the Consultant,” Minister Harmon said.
In addition, the Minister of Finance has also been asked to forward the said reports to the Auditor General for a more precise audit of the issues highlighted in the report, he said.
NICIL played a major role, under the former administration, in the execution of a number of government projects, including the highly controversial Marriott Hotel and the Amaila Falls Hydropower Project.
The Government, then in Opposition, had pledged to ensure that the agency is thoroughly investigated and those culpable of wrongdoings, are held accountable.