THERE was high drama on Thursday in front of the Linden Town Council when the Town Clerk (TC) ,Jonellor Bowen, was issued a letter to proceed on administrative leave pending investigations into her conduct on the job. The police had to be called in after Bowen had initially allegedly refused to hand over crucial documents for the council. Linden Mayor Carwyn Holland issued Bowen the letter which stated that
she has been sent on administrative leave. The council had months ago, after moving a no-confidence motion against Bowen, recommended that she be sent on administrative leave, but had to be given permission by the Minister of Communities Ronald Bulkan to do so. The council received a correspondence from Minister Bulkan on Thursday giving them the go-ahead to send the TC on leave. Immediately, Bowen was issued a letter even as she was awaiting the results of a private hearing that ended about two weeks ago.
The hearing was conducted by the Ministry of Communities to ascertain whether the grounds listed by the council for her to be relieved of her duties were true. Several councillors and administrative staff of the LMTC testified at the hearing. Bowen did confirm to media operatives that she on Thursday received a letter from the mayor which stipulated that she will be temporarily relieved of her duties.
According to reports, she was stopped from leaving the council’s compound with pertinent documents which she refused to hand over. The police and several other regional officials were on the scene even as Bowen tried to leave with the documents. Mayor Holland told the Guyana Chronicle that he was successful in retrieving the documents from the town clerk after the police intervened.
Last Wednesday the council for the second time boycotted the statutory meeting in protest against the town clerk. Holland said that they had refused to work with Bowen. The council and the town clerk have been at loggerheads since they took office in March.