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Another Pan Trinbago executive resigns

Citing lack of transparency
Published: 
Sunday, January 8, 2017
Cindy Rosemin

Another member of the Keith Diaz-led Pan Trinbago executive has resigned insisting there was a lack of transparency in the leadership of the organisation.

Assistant Secretary Cindy Rosemin tendered her resignation letter to the acting president of Pan Trinbago Richard Forteau on Saturday. Last November, Byron Serrette resigned as vice-president of the organisation citing questionable financial transactions and a large and growing debt within the organisation.

Pan players, led by Trinidad All Stars member, Dane Gulston have been protesting over the past two weeks demanding that Diaz and the entire executive resign immediately because of a lack of transparency in the management of the affairs of Pan Trinbago.

They claim that Diaz and his executive have been treating them with disrespect. The players are also upset over the non-payment of the $1,000 remittance owed to each of them for participating in the 2016 Panorama competition.

Culture Minister Nyan Gadsby-Dolly said last Friday the money was disbursed to the organisation to pay the players but up to last week they had not been paid. Pan players say they received cheques last week but was unable to cash it at the bank. The issue remains unresolved.

Gadsby-Dolly in an interview with the T&T Guardian on Friday said that she had to act to “protect the taxpayers’ purse and the interest of panmen, in light of the allegations of financial impropriety involving the steel band organisation.” As a result ass funding will go through the National Carnival Commission and not directly with Pan Trinbago.

Diaz was admitted to hospital on Friday and underwent successful angioplasty surgery to unclog blocked arteries in his heart.

Public relations officer of the organisation, Michael Joseph, said the emergency meeting scheduled for Saturday was postponed because of Diaz’ health emergency.

Forteau is the substantive secretary of Pan Trinbago.

Rosemin also expressed frustration over the state of affairs in Pan Trinbago.

In her letter , dated January 7, Rosemin said during her tenure she requested “on more than one occasion some transparency with the financial accounts of the organisation, specifically all accounts, balances and updates.” She said the requests were never met.

Rosemin said she also expressed concerns about the “manner in which funds were being used,” adding that it was being done in a callous way.

Pan Trinbago was owing suppliers and others an estimated $31 million, according to president of the National Carnival Commission, Kenny De Silva.

Rosemin told Forteau Pan Trinbago was a non-profit organisation and should be run as such.

“The lavish spending and financial inconsistencies have far exceeded any acceptable level,” adding that this situation was “a bit difficult to digest.”