$1.6M fraud alleged at City hall
Stabroek News
May 14, 2002

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Minister of Local Government, Clinton Collymore has written to acting Commissioner of Police, Floyd McDonald, requesting that the police launch an investigation into alleged financial irregularities at the Georgetown Municipality with regard to a sum exceeding $1.6 million.

The letter, a copy of which was copied to the Town Clerk of the Mayor & City Council (M&CC), was sent to the commissioner on May 6 with the heading, `Re: Financial Irregularity at City Municipality.' The letter was cause for discussion at yesterday's statutory meeting at City Hall.

In the letter the minister informed the acting commissioner that following reports of a possible financial irregularity being perpetrated on the Georgetown Municipality, he asked the Auditor General to conduct an audit of the relevant accounts. The audit confirmed that financial irregularities had taken place and that goods worth over $1.6 million purchased by City Hall from A.H & L Kissoon could not be accounted for in the municipality.

"In accordance with the provisions of the Municipal and District Councils Act Chapter 28:01, the Minister of Local Government hereby submits the report of the Auditor General to you, and requests that a police investigation into the crime be launched, with a view towards prosecuting those involved."

Yesterday A Good & Green Guyana (AGGG) councillor, Patricia Chase-Green questioned what would be the outcome of the minister's letter, recalling that a few years ago the council had taken the decision to stop the police from intervening in municipality matters.

Deputy Mayor, Robert Williams, who chaired yesterday's proceedings in the absence of Mayor Hamilton Green, pointed out that the council had agreed to whatever course of action the minister took in the matter.

However, he noted that a copy of the Auditor General's report was not sent to the Town Clerk. He advised the Town Clerk that a request should be made to the Auditor General for a copy of the report. According to Williams once the Auditor General entered City Hall he had a duty to share with the council what his findings were.

PNC/R councillor, Ranwell Jordan, pointed out that the minister only made a request of the commissioner and he questioned whether it was a request the commissioner could act upon.

He suggested that any police officer who visited City Hall to conduct an investigation should walk with a copy of the report and inform the person being investigated about the allegation.