…Investigations by OP reveals that he should be reinstated
Almost six years after being dismissed from the Customs and Trade Administration of the Guyana Revenue Authority (GRA) Richard Prince, is seeking redress and justice since he believes he was wrongfully discharged.
After his dismissal in June 2005, Prince said that he petitioned Office of the President to investigate his dismissal. The President ordered the investigation that started in February 2009. When it was completed, the findings revealed teat Prince’s dismissal was unwarranted and irregular.
The investigation also recommended that Prince be reinstated. However, he is still languishing jobless. Commissioner General Khurshid Sattaur has refused to heed the recommendation of Office of the President.
Prince told this publication that he was employed by the Customs and Trade Administration and was stationed at the New Amsterdam Customs Office prior to his wrongful termination.
However, his dismissal was rooted in an eight-hour claim that was made for overtime while on duty in New Amsterdam Berbice. “The boarding book, the tide book, the incoming register and interview all concerned parties would have verified my claim. The Guyoil security register at Heatburn Depot, the shipping personnel from Guyoil, the Guyana National Shipping Corporation shipping clerk could have verified that I stated work from 4:10 hrs but they (GRA) only checked from when other staff turned up at 12:30 to start working. But I was working eight hours before that, and I claimed for that, but they never questioned me they just fired me!”
He explained that in the beginning there was a highly flawed and deficient investigation where he was never questioned or asked to furnish evidence that would have cleared him of any wrongdoings. This was compounded by an incompetent review done by the Internal Affairs Division of the GRA, “who never saw it fit to interview me so as to ascertain the facts of the matter being investigated.”
Prince noted that it is imperative that a thorough and efficient review requires all concerned parties be given a hearing. However, he has contended that this was not given to him” by the vindictive, cruel and anti working action meted out to me by the hierarchy of the Guyana Revenue Authority who knew that I did nothing wrong to merit my dismissal.
“They authorized my dismissal knowing I was never afforded a hearing…. I never accepted this wrong that was done to me hence I appealed to the chairman of the GRA Board and then Petitioned President Jagdeo to investigate my matter which he facilitated.”
After the investigation was held in 2009, Prince said the results revealed that he was wrongfully dismissed and should be reinstated. However, to date he is still awaiting the implementation of the recommendation of the investigation that was carried out by the then Advisor to the President, Mr. William Cox.
He said what he found very prejudicial and unacceptable was the original report never recommended his dismissal from the GRA. “I have a right to work in an environment free of intimidation or abuse of power, to earn so that I can provide for myself and family, therefore, to deprive me vindictively, maliciously or without just cause is very oppressive, inhumane, prejudicial, highly criminal, draconian and demonic.”
Adding that GRA had held three months of his overtime payment, without giving him a reason, Prince said he has suffered loss of income, and that his name and reputation have been maligned.
“I am seeking a reversal of the wrongful act so that my dignity, my name and other loses I suffered can be restored. At the same time whilst the grass is growing the horse is starving but who cares?…I am very appreciative that the President has enabled the truth to be ascertained and he had delegated other officials to implement the recommendations of the Cox’s report but it’s now over two years and to date, I am still languishing jobless having be repeatedly assured that I would be reinstated.”
Senior people in Office of the President reportedly called the Commissioner General but the latter kept ignoring the request. One senior official said that Office of the President is reluctant to dictate to the Commissioner General.
The frustrated Prince noted that he is amazed at how a manager can dismiss an employee within a Government department without giving that individual an opportunity to explain and provide the necessary evidence to refute any misconception or suspicions.
“That is unlawful and GRA should not be allowed to get away with this high handed crime against humanity.”
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