A foreign woman, who is acting as a human resources consultant for the Utilities Regulation and Competition Authority (URCA) is also an executive at Cable & Wireless Communications (CWC).
The Nassau Guardian reports that it has been conducting a probe into the matter.
The fact that Marsha Lewis is working for URCA could present a conflict of interest as URCA is currently considering the sale of 51 percent of the Bahamas Telecommunications Company (BTC) to CWC.
“The revelation that a CWC executive is providing human resources consultancy services to URCA – the country’s telecommunications regulator – is likely to throw the integrity of URCA’s consideration of the deal into question and create a new round of controversy over the already contentious privatization issue,” the Nassau Guardian suggests.
An examination of Ms Lewis’ online profile on the LinkedIn website shows that she is the curent executive vice president of Cable and Wireless Barbados. She also states that she is the former executive vice president of human resources at LIME Caribbean (Cable and Wireless).
Ms Lewis reveals in her online profile that she has been the human resources consultant for URCA for the past two years.
It is understood that Lewis was hired after Usman Saadat, a former CEO of CWC St. Lucia, became the CEO of URCA. The paper admits that there is no evidence that he directly hired her.
The arrangement gives credence to the PLP’s concerns that it can not merely be a coincidence that an 11-year employee of Cable and Wireless would be selected for such an important role of regulating a company of which he (Mr. Saadat) was once a chief executive officer.
A PLP statment rleased recently said, “Clearly any rational thinking person would conclude that this is a very serious and blatant conflict of interest and the FNM government demonstrated incredibly poor judgment in the hiring of Usman Saadat.”
The plot thickens.