$1M per month but guards get below the minimum wage
The President’s College is paying $1M dollars for security, but how much of that money is actually going to the security guards?
Kaieteur News understands that the institution is staffed by 15 guards at the peak of employment and each guard is paid a wage of $16,000 per fortnight, which works out to just above $100 per day, well below the stipulated minimum wage paid by the government.
Security staff at the college reported that they work a 12-hour shift and since they do not earn overtime pay, their wages are less than desirable.
A company by the name of Surveillance Security Service has the contract to provide guards at the college.
“Is only because we really need money for our families that we are keeping quiet,” said one of the guards.
A rough calculation of the figures will show that the company pockets more than half of the contract fee.
But is the college getting value for money? At least one senior official there does not think so.
According to sources at the college, despite the presence of security personnel the institution continues to suffer significant losses due to theft.
There appears to be little or nothing the college could do to rectify the situation, since it is alleged that the contract was approved by a senior official of the Board of Directors who it is said has a vested interest in the security company.
However, one source disclosed that the security contract at the college has attracted the attention of the Auditor General.
While no one at the AG’s office could confirm whether a probe is underway, a senior official at the college informed that already contract documents have been requested by the government auditors.
President’s College has been biting out a huge chunk of financial resources from the government’s coffers and it is believed that the institution is being poorly administered by its Board of Directors.
To this end, a decision has been taken to reduce overhead expenses first by cutting staff. But the move is not being welcomed by many.
Kaieteur News understands that yesterday several workers who have less than seven years service were given letters of termination, which will take effect on October 1.
These workers include kitchen and auxiliary staff, who will be given a severance package.
According to a source, some of the severed employees broke down in tears after receiving their letters.
Additionally, the college is in the process of retiring several other employees including the Administration Manager, while at least 13 other employees will be transferred to the Ministry of Education.
These moves were as a result of mediation between the Ministry of Education and the Guyana Public Service Union.
There have been calls for a complete audit of the institution since there appears to be a lack of accountability in many areas of the administration.
Although schools throughout the country reopened yesterday, the President’s College remains closed until next week to allow for the completion of physical repairs.
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