Two years after Finance Minister, Dr. Ashni Singh; and former Chief Executive Officer (CEO) of National Industrial and Commercial Investment Limited (NICIL) Winston Brassington, were charged for unlawfully selling three plots of state land, the matters were this morning withdrawn.
According to information, this morning when the matter was called before Chief Magistrate Ann McLennan, the SOCU Prosecutor and the virtual complainant for NICIL told the court that they will not be proceeding with the matters. Hence, the matter was withdrawn.
In April of 2018, Singh and Brassington were jointly slapped with three charges of misconduct in public office as these relate to three plots of state land.
The first charge alleged that Dr. Ashni Singh, being and performing duties of Minister of Finance, and Chairman of the National Industrial and Commercial Investment Limited, a company owned by the Government of Guyana; and Brassington being and performing duties as the Chief Executive of NICIL, on May 14, 2011, at Lot 126 Barrack Street, Kingston, Georgetown, sold a tract of land, being a portion 10.002 acres of Plantation Turkeyen, East Coast of Demerara, property of the State of Guyana for the sum of $185,037,000, without first having procured a valuation of the said property from a competent valuation officer.
It was further alleged that Dr. Ashni Singh, and Winston Brassington on December 30, 2008, at Lot 126 Barrack Street, Kingston, Georgetown, by way of Agreement of Sale and Purchase without due diligence, sold to Scady Business Corporation, a 4.7 acres tract portion of Plantation Liliendaal, East Coast Demerara, for $150M knowing that the said property was valued at $340M by Rodrigues Architects Associate, a competent valuation officer.
The last charge stated Dr. Ashni Singh, and Brassington on December 28, 2009, at 126 Barrack Street, Kingston, Georgetown, by way of Agreement of Sale and Purchase, acted recklessly when they sold to National Hardware Guyana Limited a tract of land at Plantation Liliendaal, Pattenson and Turkeyen, situated on the East Coast of Demerara, being 103 acres, being property of the State of Guyana for the sum of $598,659,398 (VAT exclusive) without first having procured a valuation of the said property from a competent valuation officer.
Charges were recommended against the two after SOCU had completed their Pradoville 2 investigations and has sent that file to the police legal advisor recommending that 12 persons be charged. Singh and Brassington were released on $6 million bail each on the three charges.