May 13, 2021 News
– was allocated a month before elections last year
By Neermala Ramsaywack
Documents, confirmed as authentic by Minister of Housing and Water Collin Croal, reveal that controversial Guyana Elections Commission’s (GECOM) Region Four Returning Officer, Clairmont Mingo, had received a house lot last year, three days before he made an application and one month before the elections and his controversial role in it.
In one document, dated February 1, 2020, seen by this publication, Mingo and his wife, Waveney Mingo, were allocated a house-lot at Plantation Experiment Housing Scheme, West Coast Berbice.
The allocation letter was signed by the Director of Operations of the Central Housing and Planning Authority (CH&PA), Chaflin Velloza, on behalf of the then Chief Executive Officer (CEO), Lelon Saul.The letter stated, “With reference to the above, I am pleased to offer/allocate a house lot to you within the above mentioned Housing Scheme. You will be required to make the initial payment on or before Tuesday, March 3, 2020.”
That initial payment, according to the document, had to be a minimum of 50 percent of the $500,000 value for the middle-income along with processing fees of $8,000 for conveyance, $3,000 for identification of lot fee and $500 as stamp duty.
The letter went on to state that the remaining balance should be made by September 3, 2020.
However, a second letter dated February 4, 2020 shows that Mingo made his application the same day that, that (second) letter was issued, some three days after he had already been notified that he was awarded the house lot and informed of the payment schedule. According to that letter, Mingo’s application for a residential house lot was approved by the then Regional Housing Officer for Region No. Five, Arianne Barratt Rodrigues, whose signature appears on the approval on behalf of the former CEO.
Former Minister within the Ministry of Communities with responsibility for Housing, Annette Ferguson’s signature is also seen on the top right of the letter.
The document states that, “This letter serves to certify that your application for a residential house lot dated 2020-02-04 was received by the Central Housing and Planning Authority. Please be informed that you were interviewed on the 2020-02-04 for a residential house lot, and based on the interview, you are qualified for a middle-income house lot.”
The document ended by stating that the CH&PA “will communicate with you at a later date, the area available for allocation, and the cost for the land.”
This shows that Mingo would have applied and was interviewed on the same day, February 4, and ‘recommended’ – by the then Minister – for a house lot that he had already been approved for three days before. When this publication made telephone contact with Ferguson for a comment, she hung up the phone immediately after hearing the first question posed.
Nevertheless, Croal, the Minister of Housing and Water, confirmed that the documents seen by this publication are authentic. He said that an investigation into the house lot revealed that Mingo indeed received his house lot before his application and made a payment of $500,000; the full cost of the house lot, on February 1, 2020 – this is the same day that Mingo would have received the allocation of the house lot, and three days before he would have applied and was interviewed for it.
“Whilst the allocation may be legal, it is highly irregular for an allocation to be done on the same day as an application. In this case, the Minister at that time, Annette Ferguson, approved the allocation even before the application,” Croal said, when asked about the legality of the transaction.
Mingo is currently before the courts facing criminal charges related to the March 2, 2020 General and Regional Elections. As reported by this paper, Mingo had – in two separate declarations – conjured more than 15,000 ghost voters for Region Four in his unsuccessful bid to secure the APNU+AFC Coalition a fraudulent victory. Also charged with Mingo are APNU+AFC representatives at the time, Volda Lawrence and Carol-Smith Joseph, who had separately signed off on the two fraudulent declarations from Mingo.
Jun 17, 2021Works at the Guyana Football Federation (GFF) National Training Centre located at Providence, East Bank Demerara is progressing satisfactorily with the current phase nearing completion. Updating the...
Jun 17, 2021
Jun 17, 2021
Jun 17, 2021
Jun 17, 2021
Jun 17, 2021
Kaieteur News – I am quoting directly from Donald Ramotar’s letter on me in the Kaieteur News of yesterday. I will... more
Freedom of speech is our core value at Kaieteur News. If the letter/e-mail you sent was not published, and you believe that its contents were not libellous, let us know, please contact us by phone or email.
Feel free to send us your comments and/or criticisms.
Contact: 624-6456; 225-8452; 225-8458; 225-8463; 225-8465; 225-8473 or 225-8491.
Or by Email: [email protected] / [email protected]