Categorized | National News

Unions Allege Theft at COB

Several unions that represent College of The Bahamas (COB) workers and students are demanding a probe into monies that were allegedly stolen from the college’s business office.

The Union of Tertiary Educators Bahamas (UTEB), the Bahamas Public Services Union (BPSU) and the College of The Bahamas Union Of Students (COBUS), in a press statement said more than $12,000 have gone missing.

Now, the unions are demanding answers from COB.

The unions said on Friday, November 15, one employee from the business office was abruptly fired.

They want to know why, since no one has been formally charged or made to own up to the missing funds.

In an interview with The Bahama Journal last evening, UTEB President, Mark Humes said his union is concerned with COB’s hiring practices in the business office.

“Typically, the persons that have been coming in have not been going through the regular or the same process that most employees of the college go through, where it’s done through an appointments board. Most of the hiring has been of contracted, temporary or part-time workers who have been basically selected by the vice-president of finance,” he said.

“As a result, we’re trying to get more information as to what took place with the missing funds. We understand that one member of the business office has been terminated. Apparently one is set to be demoted. We don’t know if this is as a result of an investigation because the college community has not been made aware of this. So, along with COBUS, the Public Managers Union and the BPSU we’re all calling for a thorough investigation into the matter and for public disclosure. We would like for our administrators to be open with us as to what is taking place with the finances of the college.

COBUS President Alphonso Major Jr. said he hopes COB is not “trying to sweep this matter under the rug without a thorough investigation into and accounting for this matter, particularly for the stakeholders and others who have a vested financial interest in COB.”

“There should be proper systems of checks and balances in place to ensure that the student and public funds that go into supporting this institution are accounted for and the college should not take this matter of the missing money lightly. The stakeholder unions of the College of the Bahamas want answers and transparency from the college in the matter of the missing money,” Mr. Major said.

Rogan Smith

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