$14.5M in City Coun­cil pen­sion funds not paid over since Fe­bru­ary, 2017

Stabroek News Sunday - - LETTERS -

Mil­lions of dol­lars de­ducted from staff of the Ge­orge­town City Coun­cil have not been re­mit­ted to their pen­sion schemes.

Ewort Adams, Deputy Man­ag­ing Di­rec­tor of In­sur­ance Bro­kers Guyana Lim­ited, told the Com­mis­sion of In­quiry (CoI) into the city’s op­er­a­tions that they have not re­ceived a pen­sion re­mit­tance from the city since Fe­bru­ary, 2017.

The city now owes ap­prox­i­mately $14.5 mil­lion for the pe­riod March, 2017 to Septem­ber 28, 2018 based his cal­cu­la­tion on the last sub­mis­sion of the coun­cil in Fe­bru­ary, 2017, which was $776,523 and the as­sump­tion that ev­ery other month would have in­curred sim­i­lar con­tri­bu­tions since no one has been added to the plan since.

“It is wor­ry­ing to me and to work­ers since it means if some­one re­signs they will not re­ceive their full pen­sion… it is monies de­ducted from em­ploy­ees’ salaries on a monthly ba­sis and not re­mit­ted,” Adams stated.

He also noted that the coun­cil is in ar­rears for Mo­tor and Fire In­sur­ance to the tune of $9,566,304 for a pe­riod be­gin­ning 21st Fe­bru­ary, 2017 for mo­tor ve­hi­cles and from De­cem­ber, 2017 for fire.

Adams ex­plained that his at­tempts to have the sums re­mit­ted have been met with a “royal runaround” from Deputy Town Clerk Sharon Mun­roe-Harry and act­ing City Trea­surer John Dou­glas.

He noted that Mun­roe-Harry had promised to have the amounts liq­ui­dated by mak­ing a pay­ment of one mil­lion a week but this was not re­al­ized. His next visit to coun­cil saw him di­rected to Dou­glas, who asked that he re­turn twice. On his sec­ond visit to Dou­glas, he was asked to see Mun­roe-Harry but that meet­ing did not re­sult in any pay­ments ei­ther. His last visit to the coun­cil was on Thurs­day. Asked to of­fer his opin­ion on the rea­son the coun­cil has failed to makes these pay­ments, Adams noted that “the coun­cil doesn’t have money and have their pri­or­i­ties in the wrong or­der.”

“You need to en­sure monies de­ducted from em­ploy­ees’ salaries are used for what they are in­tended,” he stressed, ex­plain­ing that he is also con­cerned with the fact that the pen­sion scheme is not reg­is­tered as re­quired by law.

De­spite hav­ing been sum­moned by the Com­mis­sioner of In­sur­ance and hav­ing been sent nu­mer­ous let­ters, the

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