Auditor General collecting evidence in probe into Town Clerk’s use of funds

Last Updated on Saturday, 26 December 2015, 20:59 by GxMedia

Town Clerk Carol Sooba

Auditor General, Deodat Sharma on Thursday confirmed that a probe has begun into the Town Clerk, Carol Sooba’s alleged misuse of GUY$500,000 to pay a city lawyer in connection with a High Court matter in which she is not a party.

Sharma declined to discuss in detail the status of the probe but he said a number of persons have been interviewed and documents collected. He could not say when his investigation would be completed.

DemWaves was told that the Audit Office has formally requested a copy of the cheque to Attorney-at-Law, Roysdale Forde and the contract with him.

Sooba’s substantive appointment as Town Clerk has triggered legal action by the Municipality’s Public Relations Officer, Royston King who was one of the qualified candidates whose application was turned down. Then Local Government Minister, Ganga Persaud went ahead and appointed Sooba although an interview panel had unanimously recommended someone else.

Current Local Government Minister, Norman Whittaker questioned the procedure for calling in the Auditor General, saying that the decision to do so was not made by the Council but by the Deputy Mayor, Patricia Chase-Green. “The correct procedure is that it should have been discussed at the level of Council and Council takes a decision to request an inquiry,” he told DemWaves.

Whittaker said that despite his concerns about the procedure, he would respect the findings by the Auditor General when the report is compiled.