HEAD of the Special Branch Ainsley Garrick was sent on all of his vacation leave on Monday because the Special Branch allegedly failed to do the proper background checks on new Minister of Public Utilities Robert Le Hunte.
Newsday was told Garrick is scheduled to return to work in 2019 and will continue working for just over three months before he proceeds on pre-retirement leave. Newsday understands when Garrick was informed he was being sent on all his leave and the reasons for doing so, he fell ill and was taken to hospital by colleagues. Doctors treated Garrick for high blood pressure and he was allowed to return home.
Well-placed sources told Newsday the Special Branch is supposed to do background checks on people to be sworn in as government ministers, senators and even people that fill top positions in embassies and consulates in foreign countries.
According to information reaching Newsday, Le Hunte's name was given to the Special Branch for background checks and it was not revealed to the prime minister that he was also a citizen of Ghana.
On Monday, Acting Commissioner of Police Stephen Williams sent Garrick on leave and Sen Supt Austin Lee was transferred to the South Western Division.
Contacted yesterday, Garrick told Newsday: "I do not wish to say anything at this time." Questioned further by Newsday if he was told by Williams why he was sent on leave, Garrick said: "I do not wish to share any information."
Le Hunte’s appointment was revoked earlier this week after the Office of the Prime Minister learnt he was a citizen of Ghana. He was re-appointed on Thursday night having revoked his Ghanian citizenship.
Special Branch is being blamed for the miscommunication in the appointment of Robert Le Hunte. In fact, head of the Special Branch Ainsley Garrick was sent on all of his vacation leave on Monday because Special Branch failed to do the proper checks and balances on new minister of Public Utilities Le Hunte. Read more in tomorrow’s Newsday.