…questioned by SOCU…released on $200,000 station bail eachOne day after being released on $6 million bail each, former Finance Minister, Dr Ashni Singh and former Chief Executive Officer of the National Industrial and Commercial Investment Limited (NICIL) Winston Brassington were called in for questioning by the Special Organised Crime Unit (SOCU).On Wednesday, the two former Government officials, accompanied by their lawyers – Anil Nandlall, Mark Waldron and Sase Gunraj – arrived at SOCU’s headquarters in Georgetown at about 09:00h and left some four hours later with SOCU officials.Nandlall told the press, who waited patiently outside SOCU, that the two were questioned about 27 allegations of misconduct in public office, even on matters dating back to 1994.These transactions involve the following Guyana Stockfeeds; Marilyn Oudho; Clairan’s; Guyana Bank for Trade and Industry; Duke Lodge; Pritipaul Singh Investments; Hand-in-Hand; National Hardware; Twin’s Manufacturing; Old GPC; Anthony Pierres; Property Holdings Inc; I Ali; Hicks, Linden; Sanata at Industrial Site; Mohabir, Linden and SOL (Guyana).The lead attorney noted that no allegation of dishonesty was made, nor are there any allegations that the duo has stolen public funds, or profited from these transactions. These transactions, according to him, had received the approval of Cabinet, and were one on the recommendations of the NICIL Board. “I maintain that these charges are intended to harass, humiliate and persecute these persons,” he asserted.Nandlall told Guyana Times that he was advised that the charges were recommended by advice received from Dr Sam Sittlington, who is assisting SOCU.“If these cases are tainted in criminality, are they now going to charge all the persons who purchased? That would even be more ridiculous.”He said it amounts to unfairness and unequal treatment meted out to his clients.In addition to that, Nandlall is arguing that Government distributed over 100,000 house lots which were deliberately sold below market value“Are they going to charge the 100,000 persons who benefited from these housing programme?”Targeting political opponentsMeanwhile, Dr Singh told the media that the coalition Administration was using SOCU to target its political opponents. “I would say that what we are witnessing is State bullyism, political harassment of the very worst kind,” he said. Nevertheless, the former Minister said both himself and Brassington are cooperating with SOCU.He reiterated that the charges for which he and his former colleague were granted bail for, are not only baseless but irrational. Dr Singh again expressed confidence that the matter would be disposed of and promised to remain focused, explaining that he will not be intimidated by the matter before him.On the other hand, Brassington also told the media that while being questioned, SOCU officials went through tonnes of files totalling over 20. “They are taking every instance where the valuation is above the selling price and calling it misconduct in public office… cases even if we had a public tender,” he said.The former NICIL head noted that every single transaction received several layers of approval, first by the Privatisation Unit Board, the NICIL Board and then by Cabinet. “We have produced records showing what we did and there is nothing wrong in what we did. Everything we did we have a justification and an approval from Boards and Cabinet, so it is a travesty in justice,” he added.Singh and Brassington were taken to the Criminal Investigations Department of the Guyana Police Force. They were fingerprinted and later released on $200,000 station bail each.The two former Government officials were charged on Tuesday for allegedly selling several plots of State land on the East Coast of Demerara to National Hardware Guyana Ltd for over $598 million; Scady Business Corporation at a cost of $150 million, and to Multi-cinemas Guyana at a cost of $185 million.The two will return to SOCU on Monday for further questioning.
Pictured are some of the Transition Year 5k Committee, James McMonagle, Chairperson LK Credit Union, Gordon Randles LKCU Manager, Attracta Winters, Chairperson St Eunan’s Parents’ Association, Brian Harkin ,LKCU, Ted McLaughlin, LKCU, Eva McCloskey, LKCU Youth Officer, Jim Toner, LKCU & Gary McDaid, St Eunan’s CollegeSaint Eunan’s Parents’ Association, Staff and the Transition Year 5k Committee launched their 5K event this week along with representatives of Letterkenny Credit Union. The Credit Union is kindly sponsoring the event which is to take place on Thursday 10th of April at 7.15pm. Enrolment for the 5K will take place in the College Recreation Hall from 6pm onwards prior to the start of the race.Chris Darby, Principal of Saint Eunan’s College wants to encourage as many people in the local community to take part as possible. “We had a fantastic turn out last year with almost 600 people taking part. We want 5k 2014 to be as much fun and are encouraging our students past, present and new students starting in September 2014 and their families to join in.“We are welcoming both walkers and competitive runners and all participants are invited back to the school for refreshments at the end of course. We would like to thank Letterkenny Credit Union for their sponsorship of the 5k, Letterkenny Athletic Club for their involvement and indeed all the local businesses who have supported College fundraising events throughout the year.”School Staff, the Parents’ Association and TY Committee envisage the 5k very much as a community event and feel that participants enjoying themselves is the most important aspect of the evening.Fundraising is however increasingly important to the Committee as the school has so many students very successfully involved in both sports and academic pursuits. This week sees St Eunan’s Senior Team progress to the final of the McLarnon Cup, the Senior Rugby Team are this years Ulster Champions, St Eunan’s Students are competing in the Maths Olympiad and the college has a team in the IMTA National Final Team Math Competition. Most of these projects require some degree of financial support be it in terms of travel, equipment or materials.“The Parents’ Association are only too aware of the difficulties facing the school in terms of facilities and current financial challenges. Despite this Saint Eunan’s Students continue to excel and it is for this reason that we as parents and a community need to get behind the school and support it in any way we can. We are heartened that refurbishment has commenced in a number of areas in the school buildings and plans are afoot to expand the existing facilities and bring them up to date. The boys both current and future deserve the best.” says Attracta Winters, Chairperson of the Parents Association. “Coming into St Eunan’s on a more regular basis I can’t help but notice how clean, tidy & well maintained the building is despite its advancing years and high impact usage. The staff and students must take credit for this as they continue to operate a school of 850 students to a very high level in a building which was built for a much smaller number of students.“Working on projects such as the Mock Interview Workshop, the 5K and assisting at school events, we as Committee Members are in the unique position of coming into contact with the students as outsiders. We are continually impressed by the students, their willingness to work hard, be involved in committee events and their good manners with ourselves and other visitors. We have on numerous occasions received very positive feedback from visitors regarding the fine manner in which the boys conduct themselves.”Prizes are being offered for the top 3 competitors in each category, Senior Men, Senior Women, Junior Male, Junior Female and Team.The Team Category is open to groups of 5 runners who wish to run together as a Team and are encouraging not only those from Saint Eunan’s soccer, gaelic and basketball teams to put together a team but also teams from other schools and sports organisations. Spot Prizes are also on offer. Anyone interested in helping at the 5k can contact the Parents Association by e-mail: [email protected] Information about the 5k can be viewed on the Parents Association Facebook Page. “Parents Saint Eunan’s”.ST EUNANS’ COLLEGE 5K GETS UNDER STARTER’S ORDERS! was last modified: March 1st, 2014 by StephenShare this:Click to share on Facebook (Opens in new window)Click to share on Twitter (Opens in new window)Click to share on LinkedIn (Opens in new window)Click to share on Reddit (Opens in new window)Click to share on Pocket (Opens in new window)Click to share on Telegram (Opens in new window)Click to share on WhatsApp (Opens in new window)Click to share on Skype (Opens in new window)Click to print (Opens in new window)Tags:5kSt.Eunan’s College