Two men reportedly admit to being paid $150k to burn GECOM building in Linden
- third man arrested, intellectual authors being pursued
Two men who were arrested on July 05, 2021, in connection with the fire that destroyed the Guyana Elections Commission (GECOM) building at Burham Drive, Wismar, Linden one year ago, have reportedly confessed to being paid to execute the arson.
Crime Chief Wendell Blanhum confirmed on Thursday that investigators have secured confession statements from the suspects who were identified as 23-year-old Teon February called “Nut” of Canvas City, Wismar, and 21-year-old Marlon Hunter called “Bushy” of Fourth Street, Silver Town, Wismar.
The two were arrested exactly one year after committing the act. The arson was committed at the height of political uncertainty when the APNU+AFC Coalition refused to give up power although it was clear from a national vote recount that it had lost the March 2020 elections.
The News Room understands that while being questioned by investigating ranks, February admitted his involvement. He reportedly told police that he was contacted by a third man whom he identified as Bryon Kendall called ‘Murgie’ on the night of July 13, 2020, and was instructed “to burn the GECOM building.”
February said he then contacted his cousin, Hunter, and on the night in question, sometime after 22:00hrs, they drove to the location in a silver motorcar. February claimed Kendall offered to pay him $150,000 to set the building on fire.
February allegedly told detectives that before Kendall left, he was given a five-gallon bottle of gasoline from his trunk to execute the daring act.
February said they hid the gas in some nearby bushes a short distance from the GECOM building and they went home. Sometime around midnight on July 14, 2020, he along with Hunter left on foot, and upon arrival at the GECOM location, they collected the gas and entered the compound from a side gate where they gained access to the building from the back door.
February, in his detailed confession, told police that they spilled the gas in the storeroom of the upper flat of the building and set it alight, but minutes later there was an explosion.
That caused the two men to receive burns to their feet; the burnt marks are visible on Hunter’s feet. They escaped using the same route and went home. February said Kendall arrived at his home moments later and paid him $75,000 and paid the other $75,000 the following morning.
February said after the incident, he saw Kendall on several occasions; he added that Kendall told him the reason for burning the building “was because GECOM was taking too long to swear in Mr. David Granger.”
Hunter has since reportedly supported February’s statement.
Kendall was arrested on Thursday. Investigators are said to be pursuing a fourth person who is said to be the intellectual author behind the burning of the GECOM building.
The upper flat of the GECOM building was completely destroyed by the fire. A security guard had told police that she was in her security hut when she heard an explosion. Upon checking, she saw two male figures running away from the scene.