GEA Directors peeved at SOCU’s use of search warrant
Directors of the Guyana Energy Agency (GEA) has noted that the body never failed to cooperate with the Special Organised Crime Unit (SOCU) in any of its ongoing probes and therefore expressed concern over the “highly publicized search warrant” at the agency on Thursday, October 26.
On Thursday, agents of SOCU led by Assistant Commissioner, Sydney James swooped down on the GEA with a search warrant and allegedly collected several files. James is reported in the media as saying there were some difficulties accessing information from the agency.
In a statement to the media, the Agency’s Board of Directors said in the interest of transparency, “at no time was the GEA reluctant, unavailable or uncooperative in the submission and handover of the requested documents.”
Rather, the statement explained that a letter was received on October 4, 2017 from SOCU requesting a list of information, which was provided within a two-week period, “save and except for documents and vouchers in excess of two thousand files for which the GEA, in its response, noted the potential impracticality due to its sheer volume and invited the investigating team to visit the GEA office at its convenience to review the files in totality.”
Therefore, it noted that the search warrant was not necessary. As such, the Directors are looking for an explanation from SOCU about the reported ‘challenges’ faced in obtaining information required, and reiterate its continued cooperation in ongoing investigations.
SOCU is conducting investigations in relation to the forensic audit of the Guyana Energy Agency and an investigation done by the Ministry of the Presidency with respect to malpractices and mismanagement in the purchase of fuel by the Guyana Oil (Company) and the Guyana Energy Agency.