- Says he is not answerable to the RDC, describes committees as adhoc
The relationship between the Region 10 Regional Democratic Council (RDC) and the Regional Administration remains strained as the Regional Executive Officer Dwight John has made it clear through a missive, that he is not answerable to the council and that the committees established by the chairman to advice the council are adhoc and that their roles will be usurped by his office. “Mr. Deron Adams, RC, this main reason for this missive is to bring some form of semblances with regards to my appointment and responsibilities. I am answerable and accountable to my Principles, Finance Secretary, Public Procurement Commission and Public Accounts Commission,” the missive stated.
The committee’s appointed by the Chairman, he described as adhoc, include the commemoration committee which has the responsibility of organizing national and regional events and celebrations. While no mention was made in the letter specifically to commemoration, the specific issue at hand, is in relation to the Mashramani celebrations, to be held on Sunday March, 5th, 2023. The controversy between the administration, central government and the council, is that the Mash route should be taken to Christianburg instead of Bayroc. The argument is that with the facility at Bayroc under construction for the synthetic track, it will be vandalized by patrons.
Meanwhile Regional Chairman Deron Adams, at March’s statutory meeting, expressed his frustration at the letter and said it is an attempt by the REO to usurp the decision of the council by not acknowledging his role to execute the policies of the council. “It is unfortunate, very unfortunate that the REO does not see himself accountable to the RDC, this is a clear example of domination and control….as Regional Chairman, I am empowered to execute and have committees that are not adhoc so I don’t understand what the REO is making of here.”
The Constitute of Guyana, Chapter 28:02 (37) states: ‘The local authority for any village or council district, may appoint one or more committees of its own body for the transaction of special or, of general business. The Chairman of Deputy Chairman of a Village Council and the Chairman of a country authority shall be ex officio members of every such committee.’
In his missive, the REO outlined that the standing committees that will be recognized by the regional administration are Finance, Works, Education, Health and Local Government. “To this effect, the modus operandi will change to ensure proper accountability and management of resources that are under my stewardship,” he said.
The council however strongly argued that the REO is answerable to the council and his role is to finance the legal decisions made by the council. The council then challenged the REO to not pay service providers for the Mashramani celebrations. The council made a resolution to go ahead with the Mashramani celebration which will be held at Bayroc.
The Regional Chairman stressed that the council will continue to function under duress and the policies which are representation of the will of the electorate will not be recognized. He said the situation must be brought to the attention of the international community. “What is unfortunate is that we have been sitting here for the past three years, the REO as Clerk of Council is responsible for providing….I am most saddened by this that is now in writing.”
The REO in the letter stated that he is only answerable to the council, as ‘Clerk of Council’ during statutory meetings.
Making representation for him was the Deputy Regional Executive Officer (DREO) who stressed that by virtue of the REO’s employment contract the implementation of his contractual agreement is with the Ministry of Local Government and Regional Development and called out the council for also usurping some of the responsibilities of the REO.