Whether CEO stays, GuySuCo’s management will be ‘strengthened’ – Jagdeo

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Just over a year after the government reposed full confidence in his ability to aid the reopening of the shuttered Enmore, Rose Hall and Skeldon Estates and appointed him as Chief Executive Officer of the Guyana Sugar Corporation (GuySuCo), Financial Analyst Sasenarine Singh has come in for harsh criticisms for his management style.

Current and former employees have accused him of being destructive, criticising his knowledge of estate management accompanied by arrogant and dictatorial behaviour.

Singh has already responded to those claims, saying he remains open to constructive criticism and in the process propped up his performance. But in an invited comment on Monday, Vice President Dr Bharrat Jagdeo refused to say whether the government was satisfied with Singh’s performance over the last year.

“Clearly we have to strengthen management,” Dr Jagdeo said instead at a press conference held at the Arthur Chung Conference Centre on Monday.

Vice President Dr Bharrat Jagdeo

He explained that even without an assessment of the CEO, the general management of the sugar company was in a weakened state and needed improvements. Dr Jagdeo said he has had little interaction with the sector from a management perspective.

“Clearly whether the CEO stays or not we have to strengthen management outcome and investment,” the Vice President added.

He told reporters that the government was now looking at bringing greater private involvement in the sector and was interested in strategic shifts in some areas. He did not say how helpful Singh would be in accomplishing this but it is something he has been talking about.

Singh was appointed CEO of GuySuCo effective September 14, 2020, replacing Harold Davis Jr who was appointed CEO in August of 2018.

He was expected to lead the Conditional Survey ahead of the reopening of the three estates.

Singh, a Project Finance Specialist with over 16 years experience at turnaround management internationally, in a letter to the Editor on Monday, spoke mainly about his work in strengthening procurement at GuySuCo and said criticisms levelled against him in a letter two days earlier were from a named employee who doesn’t exist.

He said as CEO, he worked hard to implement the spirit and letter of Section 24 of the Procurement Laws of Guyana.

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