Consultancy firm threatens to sue Gov’t over outstanding payments

Culture Minister, Dr. Frank Anthony
Culture Minister, Dr. Frank Anthony

[] – A Construction firm which has over time provided its services to the Ministry of Culture Youth and Sport has threatened to sue the administration over outstanding payments, totaling almost $8 million.

In a letter sent to Attorney General Anil Nandlall, Design and Construction Services Ltd (DCSL) said that despite its proven record, it has invariably experienced difficulty with the Ministry in getting it’s payments on time.

The company had worked with the Ministry for a number of years and helped with the construction of the Synthetic Track and Field Facility at Leonora, West Coast Demerara which it had abandoned over delays in payments and the Albion Lighting Project.

Synthetic Track
Synthetic Track

According to the company, subject Minister Dr. Frank Anthony had intervened in the matter in the past and the company was paid $8.7 million. However, over $7 million ($7,915,165.00) remain outstanding.

The letter which is dated August 14 gives the AG 14 days to ensure payment; failure to do so will see the company commencing legal proceedings

The consultants had previously written to the Minister within the Ministry of Finance Juan Edghill but stated that while he appeared understanding of their position, nothing has happened.

Alfred King.
Alfred King.

In the February letter written to Edghill, the company seemed to blame the Permanent Secretary Alfred King for the delay in payments.

DCSL stated that King would often use their services on projects without securing the financing and disbursements from Ministry of Finance. The company alleged that his unorthodox style of management was very pervasive on the Synthetic Track Project, on which he awarded contracts haphazardly and managed contractors poorly from contractual and financial perspectives.

The company said it had considered a number of the contractors appointed for this project to be technically poorly qualified and without sufficient financial resources to run their projects.

The final cost of the Leonora project remains a mystery, with several project delays, revised contracts and the hiring and firing of contractors for various aspects of the project.


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