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Sep 27, 2018

Sapna Budhrani to be Reinstated as NICH Prez

Sapna Budhrani

There was a parliamentary caucus and a cabinet meeting held today in Belmopan prior to Friday’s House meeting.  Cabinet agreed to the reinstatement, with immediate effect, of Sapna Budhrani. The Minister of Culture, Patrick Faber, confirmed that she is now back on the job.


Patrick Faber, Minister of Culture

“The Board of NICH met yesterday and their recommendation has been for the president to be reinstated, vindicated by this report. And also that the internal auditor Mister Matus; that his services be terminated. I share this morning the findings of the audit with the cabinet and while it is that ultimately it is board that makes decisions as it relates to the operations at NICH, you do know that it was the cabinet out of an abundance of caution when these accusations started flying around as a result of the internal auditors report, out of an abundance of caution, the cabinet said well let an external auditor look at things and see if what is being said is true or not. That has been done and so cabinet agreed this morning that Miss Budhrani should be reinstated immediately and supported the decision as well that Mister Matus be terminated. I don’t know that Mister Matus is a whistleblower you know. I don’t know of any situation where he came out rightly to say that he leaked the document and that he was concerned about what was going on. As far as I’m understanding it, Mister Matus was going along in his normal course—however misguided he was in the practice that he was engaged in as is now clear by the external auditors report—he was merely doing his job. Nobody has proven that he intentionally leaked information to try to bring the institution into question. I don’t know. You are saying so, but that has never been established. Nobody from the institution, not from NICH or the government has ever accused Mister Matus of leaking the document.”


Duane Moody

“Sir, my question is who was responsible for hiring Mister Matus because according to Doctor Morris, he is saying this morning that Mister Matus has been there three years and every single year, they’ve had issues with his audit, but yet he was still there. So who hired him?”


Patrick Faber

Patrick Faber

“I really don’t know. I have been minister since 2015 and you would know that even while I was the substantive Minister for Culture, I had a minister of state in that time period as well. But for the sake of…I can’t accept what you were saying about whistle blowing Jules, but what I can say is this. Mister Matus, as far as I am understanding from the board, was kept on or maybe it was from the time that he was hired and the intention was clear to him that he should have been upgrading himself to qualify for the position ultimately and there was a specific timeframe given for him to do that. So on that basis alone, I am not sure if it is only the basis of the results of the external auditor, but it si clear that Mister Matus is way in above his head.”

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