CCI mulls legal action against Kaieteur News, Chris Ram

Ron Webster.

Caribbean Container Inc (CCI) is seeking legal advice following an article written by Chartered Accountant, Christopher Ram, and which was published in the Kaieteur News recently about Ron Webster.

In the article, Mr. Ram asserted that the annual returns of TIMI (a private Company incorporated by Ron Webster and Colin Wiltshire) for the period 2004-2010 shows Ronald Webster as the only Shareholder in that Company.

Mr. Ram stated that “Unfortunately for Mr. Wiltshire his 18 years of exemplary service including ten as Director, Administration, and as an incorporator of TIMI were not regarded by Mr. Webster as adequate consideration for the issue to him of 500 shares.

Mr. Ram also stated that a Shareholder does not vanish on death (Mr. Wiltshire having passed away at the end of 2009).

In a statement issued to the media yesterday, the CCI group stated that the comment made by Mr. Ram were erroneously made, and some ‘half-facts’ were maliciously tailored so as to cast aspersions on the character of Ron Webster, and possibly others.

“Bearing in mind the seriousness of the assertions being made, and the potential for serious damage to reputation and the loss of public confidence,” the statement pointed out.

“The facts are that although Mr. Wiltshire’s shareholding in the Annual Returns for the period in question shows one installment ($50,000) outstanding as payment for the shares, his name is in fact listed as a Shareholder in the Annual Returns of TIMI for the period 2004-2011. Further, in 2010 TIMI wrote the surviving spouse of Colin Wiltshire, informing her of her husband’s shareholding in TIMI.”

In the article, Mr. Ram further asserted that apart from Ronald Webster and in 2012 Patricia Bacchus, no other manager of CCI was issued shares in TIMI, under the purported management buyout.

In response, CCI stated, “Seven Managers of CCI with the requisite years of service, were offered shares in TIMI in 2007. Of the 7 to whom the written offer was made, 5 responded positively initially, we have in our possession correspondences issued in 2007 in this regard. However, due to no fault of TIMI, the actual sales have not materialized to date. One of those managers indicated that he would be in a position to take up his shareholding during the second half of 2013. During 2012, after Ms. Bacchus would have satisfied the years of service criteria, she was offered shares in TIMI.”

According to CCI, between 2003- 2006, CCI was faced with imminent foreclosure over a large debt owed to a commercial bank and the then majority owners RWC-LLC – a company belonging to an American group, had withdrawn from active participation in the country by that time, and Ron Webster and Colin Wiltshire were appointed Directors on the Board of CCI by RWC-LLC.

It was noted that with the authorization of RWC-LLC, they successfully negotiated with the commercial bank for a write off of a large portion of the debt, upon the payment of a much smaller sum.

CCI stated that things began to materialize in 2006 and by the end of 2006 – CCI was able to fulfill the conditions of the compromise settlement with the bank, thereby avoiding foreclosure and the imminent liquidation of CCI.

RWC-LLC had indicated to the commercial bank, their intention to retire from any interest in Guyana and to transfer their shares in CCI (which was being held by Demerara Holdings Inc.), to TIMI.