Bowing to public pressure, Chief Secretary Ancil Dennis has rescinded his decision to appoint Hayden Spencer as an adviser in the Division of Food Production, Forestry and Fisheries.
Spencer, who represented the Belle Garden/Goodwood electoral district for eight years, was appointed secretary of the division in 2017, under the current THA administration.
He did not seek re-election and was asked to resign.
Dennis has since assumed responsibility as secretary for the division in addition to being Chief Secretary and Secretary for Tourism, Culture and Transportation.
At the post-executive council news conference on Wednesday, Dennis revealed Spencer had been rehired as an adviser in the division at a salary of $19,000.
“In the Division of Agriculture, the former secretary is assisting me at this point in time in that division,” he told reporters. “The institutional knowledge and the knowing of some of the operations within the division is relieving some of the stress and, therefore, that is the situation at this point in time.”
He said Spencer was being paid the same amount as any other adviser to the THA.
But in a statement from the Office of the Chief Secretary on Thursday, Dennis rescinded Spencer’s appointment “in keeping with his mindset of attentiveness and in light of feedback from the general public.”
The statement also quoted Dennis as saying, “Initially, I felt that Mr Spencer, having worked in the division for eight years, was the ideal choice as adviser on a month-to-month basis...
“However, after listening to the voices of Tobagonians and paying attention to their concerns, especially those in the farming community, I have decided to rescind the decision.”