Linden Mayor refutes allegations of misappropriation of funds; calls for Town Clerk’s removal
Linden Mayor, Carwyn Holland is refuting claims that he along with the Deputy Mayor racked up over five hundred thousand dollars of the Council’s money in transportation cost since assuming office.
Holland, during a press conference today, said he is contemplating taking legal action against the Town Clerk Jonella Bowen, who it is alleged made these allegations.
“The impression suggested to some sections of the media and members of the public that I treat the council’s funds like my personal piggy bank, it is not only untrue but an attempt to incriminate and bring the mayor’s office into disrepute with malicious slandering,” Holland said.
Holland said he is aware of the financial constraints of the Linden Town Council, pointing to an over two million dollars debt, hence on many occasions, he would finance his travel to the capital out-of-pocket and often times refuse refunds.
The Linden Mayor made it clear that his only intention is to develop the mining town.
He accused Bowen of being counterproductive, which he surmised could only be politically influenced. A no-confidence motion was also moved against her for the second time. The Minister of Communities was also alerted to the behaviour of the Town Clerk, Holland informed in hopes that he would have the Town Clerk removed.
Councillor, Deron John who sits on the finance committee confirmed to the media that the actual amount expended by the Mayor and Deputy Mayor totaled some 255 thousand, 464 dollars and not the amount of over 500 thousand as reported in sections of the media.
The Mayor said, “I have taken a no-tolerance position to doing things like the old regime and any semblance of corruption or mediocrity I’m determined to fight I did not become involved in my town’s municipality for any personal gain and I have shown same thus far.”
Holland also took a swipe at the media outlets that published the initial story with the allegations, claiming that a response was not solicited from him.
He believes that the back and forth “bickering” would not bring development, noting that on several occasions he reached out to the Town Clerk for them to cooperate in an effort to move the town forward.
Another Councillor, Wainewright Bethune hinted that the Town clerk leaked financial papers to the press and members of the public basing this on circumstantial evidence.