Top Udecott exec resigns

Her resignation is effective April 30. Rampaul has been overseeing the daily operations of Udecott since the resignation of executive chairman Calder Hart on March 6.

In her letter to non-executive chairman Jearlean John, Rampaul cites personal reasons for her sudden departure. The letter was hand-delivered to John at her offices at the Housing Development Corporation, South Quay, Port-of-Spain, where she is the managing director.

Newsday understands that Rampaul’s resignation came after she was asked to report to the Office of the Prime Minister yesterday. She was one of the key figures who appeared before the Uff Inquiry to give evidence regarding Udecott’s operations.

Last week, during a police search of Udecott’s Sackville Street, Port-of-Spain office, head of the Anti-Corruption Investigations Bureau (ACIB) Snr Supt Terry Young spoke to Rampaul before investigators seized documents, computers and contracts. ACIB officers are probing two Udecott projects: the Ministry of Legal Affairs Tower, built by Sunway Construction (Caribbean) Ltd, where it is alleged that two of its former directors have family ties to Hart, and the Tarouba stadium. These projects were addressed during the Uff Inquiry.

Earlier, before it was reported that Rampaul had given notice, John told Newsday she had not received a copy of the Uff Report and also said if she is required to give any information to the police, she is willing to do so.

John also pointed out that she had not yet seen documents relating to Sunway’s $368 million contract to build the Ministry of Legal Affairs Tower. She, however, plans to speak with Sports Minister Gary Hunt tomorrow on the $885 million Tarouba project which is overdue by three years. The stadium was originally scheduled for completion by 2007.

“I will be meeting with (Sports) Minister (Gary) Hunt on Wednesday in an effort to expedite the handing over of the Tarouba stadium,” John said.

She said she has started a comprehensive review of the tender rules and procedures at Udecott.

“I did get the tender rules for Udecott which I am reviewing and examining right now. I have asked for the delegation of financial authority documents. That is a critical document which shows who is responsible for what in a financial position, and at what levels that officers within the organisation can sign.”

“I am now comparing the documents before me and it is being compared against the tenders rule. It is really to establish compliance.”

John maintained that since assuming chairmanship of Udecott, she has insisted that transparency take place at all levels and she is working to ensure that the company’s operations are above board.

She will hold a meeting with the Udecott’s board of directors on April 8, one day before Opposition Leader Kamla Persad-Bissessar moves a no-confidence motion in Prime Minister Patrick Manning in the House of Representatives over the handling of the Udecott affair.


"Top Udecott exec resigns"

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