Sherod Duncan remains dismissed from Chronicle – Harmon

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Sherod Duncan, who was fired by the Guyana National Newspapers Limited (GNNL), remains off the job and it will take a new Board to determine if he can find employment at the company again.

This is according to Director General of the Ministry of the Presidency Joseph Harmon.

His statement effectively means that the Prime Minister’s decision ordering the Board of GNNL to rescind the dismissal of Duncan was not implemented.

Harmon suggested that since there is no Board in place, Duncan’s future at GNNL would have to be determined by a new Board. He said that Duncan remains fired, and that is the “definitive” position of the Government regardless of the comments of other Ministers in the Government.

Minister Raphael Trotman had said that he believed the dismissal of Duncan was too severe.

The Board of the company had voted on April 2, 2019, to fire Duncan following findings of an Auditor General investigation into the operations of the company under Duncan.

The Office of the Auditor General had contracted auditing firm Chateram Ramdihal Chartered Accountants Professional Services Firm to carry out an audit covering the period June 1, 2018, to September 10, 2018.

The investigation into Duncan’s conduct at the company had sparked when he had fired Financial Comptroller Moshamie Ramotar after details of the company’s spending under his tenure were leaked to the press.

Mrs Ramotar was reinstated on the job and Mr Duncan was sent on leave to facilitate the probe, which led to his dismissal.

However, Prime Minister Moses Nagamootoo on June 4 set aside the decision of the Board, saying that no actual vote was taken to fire Duncan.

The chairperson of the Board, Geeta Chandan-Edmond, a lawyer and former Magistrate, noted that three Directors had voted to retain Duncan while three voted to dismiss him, causing her to use her right to vote which she cast in favour of dismissing Duncan.

Chandan and three other directors have since resigned in protest over the Prime Minister’s disregard for their decision.

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