A contractor from Penal has levied against the Education Facilities Company Limited (EFCL) over an unpaid $1 million debt for work done on four schools five years ago.
Guardian Media understands that around 8 am yesterday, court marshals, bailiffs, and lawyers for GM Transport Company Limited went to the State-company’s headquarters at Long Circular Road in Maraval to seize property, which would be auctioned off to recoup the money owed.
The officials were said to be still loading furniture, computers, and other fixtures unto several trucks, up to late yesterday.
The unpaid fees are related to sewer, plumbing, and electrical repairs that were performed at the Claxton Bay Junior AC Primary, Siparia Road Presbyterian Primary, South Oropouche Government Primary, and Point-a-Pierre Special Schools.
In a brief interview yesterday, the company’s owner Gowtam Maharaj claimed that it waited until EFCL had conducted an audit into its operations and certified the work performed by it before it submitted its invoices for payment.
After EFCL failed to make the payments, the company sued.
While the case was before High Court Judge Vasheist Kokaram, the parties entered into an agreement under which EFCL agreed that it owed the money and agreed to pay.
Maharaj claimed that the company gave EFCL several extensions before it decided to take yesterday’s action.
However, even while items were being put aside to be loaded onto trucks, Maharaj was still willing to hold discussions with EFCL. None were forthcoming.
“We understand the economic situation in the country. We are willing to negotiate,” he said.
Contacted yesterday, EFCL Chairman Ricardo Vasquez declined to comment.
“The best person to contact right now would be the Minister of Education,” he said.
Responding to the inquiry, Education Minister Nyan Gadsby-Dolly stated that the Government is aware of the situation and is working on addressing it.
“The MOE and MOF are aware of the situation and are in discussion about a final resolution of the issues surrounding the debt profile of the EFCL,” Gadsby-Dolly said.