The Ministry of Finance’s report of the findings of the forensic audit into the Guyana Oil Company (GUYOIL) pointed to GUYOIL’s former Managing Director, Badrie Persaud, awarding contracts to his family members.
According to the report, “Undisclosed and ignored conflict of interests occurred for the period under review, whereby the Managing Director, Mr. Badrie Persaud awarded transportation contracts of $62 Million over the review period to his brother, Indarjeet Persaud and a construction contract for $860,000 to his nephew, Avinash Persaud.”
In addition, it was noted that the company does not have a credit card and therefore transfers monies for purchases to the account of IT network administrator, Azad Hassan, in order to obtain goods from overseas. This practice, according to the audit, exposes the corporation to opportunities of fraud by insiders.
The oil company also purchased fuel totalling $94.5 million from Deodat Dhanrajh during the review period, bypassing established fuel suppliers such as RUBIS and SOL Guyana Inc.
The absence of a marketing manager at GUYOIL came under heavy scrutiny by the auditors.
“[GUYOIL] has no Marketing Manager. The functions of the Marketing Director were performed by the Managing Director allowing for the avoidance of checks and balances – as one would expect in the largest government corporation by revenue.”
Badrie Persaud was fired from GUYOIL a few weeks ago for taking unauthorized decisions during his tenure.
The audit was conducted by Nigel Hinds financial services, for the period November 1, 2011 to May 31, 2015, and ordered by President David Granger, immediately after he assumed office last year.