In a move to shake up the management of the state media, the Office of the President which overlooks the portfolio for the Ministry of Information, has decided to move Acting Chief Executive Officer at the National Communications Network, Michael Gordon from that position and appoint him as the new General Manager for the state-owned Guyana Chronicle Newspapers.
The appointment is expected to take effect from early April. Multiple sources at NCN and the Guyana Chronicle have confirmed the move.
There are also reports that the Head of the Government Information Agency, Neaz Subhan could find himself acting as the new Chief Executive Officer for NCN or in a Senior Management position at the state-owned tv and radio network as the company continues its search for a Chief Executive Officer. A number of persons have been interviewed for the CEO position. If Subhan gets the nod and is moved to NCN, it will leave the door open for the appointment of a new Head of GINA.
A senior Office of the President Information Officer has been eyeing the GINA job but it is unlikely that the Donald Ramotar administration will had it to him.
News Source understands that Gordon was shocked with the decision to move him from NCN especially since he has been working there in senior positions for over a decade and has a good understanding of both television and radio production.
However, there are reports that the Office of the President had major concerns about his non-performance on the job.
He was appointed acting Chief Executive Officer after the Government forced the resignation of Mohammed “Fuzzy” Sattaur who served as CEO for a number of years. Sattaur was given the green light to move on just after the company found itself in an alleged embarrassing fraud case that involved its Programme Manager at the time, Martin Goolsarran.
Goolsarran was fingered in dumping millions of dollars intended for the state-owned tv station into his personal bank account and also sent out invoices to a major telecommunications company in his own name and received payments in his name which were intended for NCN. Although an investigation unravelled the fraud, the Government never moved to have criminal charges instituted against any of those fingered, but rather both Goolsarran and Sattaur were asked to resign.
Gordon tried to change the face of NCN radio and television and make the media houses more acceptable to a population that complained bitterly about its bias in favour of the ruling party. He overlooked the launch of a number of tv shows that were expected to add balance to coverage provided by NCN. The Opposition parties still complained about the bias that lingered and even made moves in the National Assembly to slice the budget for NCN and GINA.
NCN’s own financial records revealed that without the Government’s subvention, the company was still making money.
News Source understands that the Government intends to make several other changes to key positions at the state media houses. Just last week, the Office of the President called in the editors of the Chronicle to figure out how a story that pushed a third term for former President Jagdeo with bogus polls ended up in the newspapers.
Senior Officials at Office of the President believe the report which named Jagdeo as the best Candidate to lead the PPP into snap elections, was meant to undermine the Ramotar Presidency and question his management. The story appeared in the Chronicle one day after it appeared in the Guyana Times. The Guyana Times is owned by the best friend of the former President.
Bharrat Jagdeo is constitutionally barred from seeking a third term in office. There are multiple reports that the Jagdeo best candidate story was sent to the Guyana Chronicle by a senior information liaison officer at the Office of the President who reportedly instructed the editors that the story must be carried on the front page.