Retired Chief of Staff of the Guyana Defence Force, Major General Joe Singh has been appointed by President Irfaan Ali to serve as Chairman of the Natural Resource Fund Board.
The President has also appointed British Member of Parliament David Lammy and Guyana’s Permanent Representative to the UN, Carolyn Rodrigues as his other two nominees to the Board.
The three Presidential nominees will join the parliamentary nominee, Dunston Barrow, and the Private Sector nominee Ramesh Dookoo as the members of the Board of Directors of the Natural Resource Fund.
The Board will effectively oversee the spending of the country’s oil resources.
Section 5 (2), of the Natural Resouce Fund Act mandates that Directors be selected from persons who have wide experience in legal, financial, business, or administrative matters.
The APNU+AFC Opposition is currently challenging the passage of the Natural Resource Fund Act, which paved the way for the Board’s appointment.
In a recent Court filing, the APNU+AFC through its Chief Whip Christopher Jones is requesting a declaration that the appointment of any board of directors would be illegal by virtue of what the Opposition said is the non-passage of the Act.
But with the Court still to hear and determine the matter, the Government has been moving ahead with the appointment of the Board and the other systems to be put in place for its effective operation.
“Today, in accordance with the Act and in the exercise of his deliberate judgment, His Excellency President Dr Mohamed Irfaan Ali has appointed Major General (ret’d) Joseph Singh, MSS, Mr David Lammy, MP (UK) and Carolyn Rodrigues along with Mr Dunstan Barrow and Mr Ramesh Dookoo as the Board of Directors of the Natural Resource Fund (NRF) of Guyana. Additionally, Major General (ret’d) Joseph Singh, MSS, has been appointed as the Chairman of the Board of Directors by His Excellency the President. The Directors will be invited to take their Oaths of Office shortly.” The President office said today.
Last month the National Assembly approved a motion for Dunstan Barrow, nominated by the Standing Committee on Appointments of the National Assembly, to serve as a Director of the Board of Directors, of the Fund.
Private sector organizations selected former Private Sector Commission Chairman Ramesh Dookoo to serve as their representative on the Board.
Section 5 (1) of the Natural Resource Fund Act provides for a Board of Directors of the Fund comprising of not less than three (3) and not more than five (5) members, who shall be appointed by the President, inclusive of a chairperson.