Disciplinary action has been taken against four employees of the Tobago House of Assembly (THA) Division of Tourism, Culture and Transportation regarding funds deposited into an incorrect bank account.
The money was intended for Virgin Atlantic Airways for payment for airlift arrangements.
THA assemblyman Farley Augustine, at a news conference a week ago, alleged that a THA official, after receiving an e-mail from Virgin Atlantic Airways about a change in its bank account number, gave instructions for funds meant for the airline to be wired to the new account in the UK.
The money was subsequently withdrawn and the account closed. It was learnt that the airline never collected the sum.
In a press release yesterday, THA Chief Secretary Kelvin Charles said the matter was reported to the Fraud Squad, which is investigating.
“The Chief Administrator is in receipt of reports from all relevant employees at the division and owing to the seriousness and severity of this matter, the chief administrator has commenced disciplinary action against four persons from the division,” the release stated.
The release noted that of the four people involved, two are public officers, one employed on contract and the other on a month-to-month basis.
“The two individuals employed on contract and on a month-to-month basis have been asked in the public’s interest to cease reporting for duty with immediate effect.
“With regard to the public officers, the matter has been referred to the Public Service Commission for appropriate disciplinary action. It must be noted that until advised by the Public Service Commission, the two public officers remain on duty at the Division of Tourism, Culture and Transportation,” the release said.