Robert Hernandez, general manager of operations at Trinidad and Tobago Postal Corporation (TTPost), has resigned following an investigation into the purchase of 50 new motorcycles which could not be used.
This was confirmed Friday by TTPost managing director Reynold Baldeosingh.
Hernandez’s resignation became effective on May 19.
The purchase of the motorcycles was made public in April, when TTPost advertised their sale via auction.
A newspaper advertisement stated 50 “new, unused and licensed motorcycles” would be for sale at TTPost’s main office at Piarco.
The Honda CGL 125cc motorcycles were stored at TTPost’s Piarco facility.
Workers had refused to use the motorcycles since they were “clutch-driven” and not designed for the kind of mail delivery required. Baldeosingh said all the motorcycles were sold between June 25 and July 11 and TTPost was able to recover approximately $350,000. He said $555,000 was spent on the motorcycles.
TTPost is now in the process of re-tendering for new vehicles-motor scooters.
“The specifications have been submitted to the tenders committee of the board and it should be approved within the next week,” said Baldeosingh.
“Once the tenders committee approves it, it goes out in the newspaper for public tender. What we ensured is that all the parties concerned are satisfied that the scooters are suitable for the delivery of the mail.”
He said the specifications were approved by TTPost’s health and safety manager, delivery manager and general secretary of the T&T Postal Workers’ Union.
The Ministry of Transport also gave approval, he said.
Baldeosingh, who was recently appointed managing director, said he was attempting to address issues raised by his staff.
Baldeosingh was previously employed as chief executive officer of the National Commission for Self Help.
One postman told the Sunday Express, in addition to the much-needed scooters, staff also needed new pouches for the mail and they had problems with not being given enough vacation time.
Baldeosingh said: “People may not have been able to proceed on vacation leave because of the short staffing.
To address that, I initiated the recruitment of 100 temporary relief officers and thus far we have brought on 51 of these workers. People will start seeing the impact of these temporary relief officers coming on so that they could now start to proceed on leave.”
And a tender has been issued for the purchase of new pouches, he said.