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Auditor takes control of information from Guyana Public Service Coop Credit Union; ousted committee members booked for Trinidad confab

The Guyana Public Service Cooperative Credit Union, Hadfield Street, Newburg, Georgetown.

As a government-appointed interim management committee of the Guyana Public Service Cooperative Credit Union (GPSCCU) seeks to unearth how millions of dollars have been spent, most of the ousted committee members have been booked to travel to Trinidad for a conference.

Though airline tickets were purchased for seven of the eight now former committee members before government moved in late last month and took control of the financial institution, sources said they have been told that they will not be representing the GPSCCU at the conference because they no longer represent that agency. If they leave Guyana for the twin-island republic, it is unclear whether they will personally pay for food and accommodation because one source said no approval could be granted for travelling allowances.

The Chief Accountant, Demerara Waves was told, turned out for duty for the first time in days and she and other staff members are said to be cooperating with the Interim Management Committee and and an external auditor. Well-placed sources told Demerara Waves Online News that the auditor has been collecting electronic and paper data to audit the books of the union.

The work of the auditor and the IMC, sources said, would result in estimated 14,000 members having to wait a bit longer for dividends. After the audit is completed, the IMC would call an AGM at which the accounts would be presented and a new Management Committee elected.

Demerara Waves Online News contacted several credit union members who informed that they have not been paid dividends for the past eight or 10 years because no Annual General Meeting has been held. “AGMs were not being held because there are no audited statements,” the source said. The last AGM was held in 2013 and, according to the source, no dividend was paid then.

Among the concerns by members and staff being examined is whether the amount of monies spent on overseas trips by the now ousted committee members were justified.

For instance,  on March 30, 2017, Patrick Yarde was allocated GY$3,532, 110 for registration and hotel accommodation for  a conference. In  separate transactions on May 31, 2017, GY$39,894 were drawn down for Cuba visa cards; GY$1,558,006 for the participation of six unnamed persons at a World Conference of Region 6; GY$39,894 for the purchase of foreign exchange and on June 1, 2017 GY$2,184,160 were set aside for the purchase of airline tickets.

In the area of foreign currency purchases, it would appear that the GPSCU’s preferred stop for foreign currency was Swiss House Cambio from where GY$1,357,080 worth of foreign currency was purchased on June 8, 2017 and GY$443,040 in foreign currency was bought on July 12, 2017.

A GY$49.6 million demand by Chief Cooperative Officer dates back to January 27, 2017 after her department did a reconciliation of the Credit Union’s status for contributions to the  Audit and Supervision Fund from 2002 to 2013.