The Regional Executive Officer (REO) of Region Two, Mr Rupert Hopkinson, in his recent attempt to mislead the public regarding the use of the vehicle assigned to me, has displayed an inadequate knowledge of the regulations, policies and practices relating to the functions of the Regional Democratic Council and the REO.
The Regional Chairman is an elected official, accountable to all the people in the Administrative Region. He is on call/on duty 24 hours a day and consequently, it is imperative that he is able to access communication and transportation 24 hours per day. It is not for the REO to determine when, where and how the Regional Chairman must use the vehicle assigned to him, although the REO may draw to the Regional Chairman or RDC’s attention abuse of the vehicle or other fixed asset assigned to the Office of the Regional Chairman.
If the REO had wanted to use the vehicle assigned to me for ministerial or other outreaches, a simple contact by telephone could have been made as was previously done. In fact REO Hopkinson ought to recall that I willingly allowed the use of the vehicle during outreaches by President Granger and our First Lady on separate occasions.
It is the REO himself who abuses the RDC’s vehicles, since even though he is an Accounting Officer he does not maintain a log book for the vehicle assigned to him.
My advice to the REO of Region Two is that he stops using bully tactics in a Region that is known for peace and continued progress. Delaying and at times refusing to sign requests for fuel for the vehicles of the Regional Chairman and Regional Vice-Chair is a reflection of his attempt to undermine their work.
The REO must stop blaming others for his obvious shortcomings and develop a democratic approach; team work is what is required. The Regional Chairman as head of the RDC remains committed to working with Mr Hopkinson in the interest of the development of all our people.