Businessman denies attempt to defraud State

EBD land scandal

Director of A-Z Pharmaceutical Medical Supplies and Equipment Inc, Eddie Doolall, one of the companies involved in the controversial acquisition and repurposing of prime State lands at Peters Hall, East Bank Demerara, has denied any role in attempting to defraud the State.
Doolall, via a statement to the press, said that he has been fully cooperating with the police and has adequate information including documents regarding the lease, the sale and assignment.

Director of A-Z Pharmaceutical Medical Supplies and Equipment Inc, Eddie Doolall

A-Z Pharmaceuticals and Medical Supplies Equipment Inc with its address listed in EE Eccles, EBD, leased 15 acres of land from the National Industrial and Commercial Investments Limited (NICIL) for 20 years at a rate of US$11,700 per year. The lease was signed on May 17, 2018, and Doolall was represented by PNCR member James Bond.
According to Attorney General Anil Nandlall, the company by way of Deed of Assignment, sub-leased the land to a Chinese national of Lot 43 Wellington Street, Georgetown for just $100.
The police have since launched an investigation and had detained and subsequently released Doolall a few days ago.
“My constraints from giving full information is that the matter is presently being investigated by the police and I wish not to jeopardise their investigation…I, however, categorically deny being involved in any arrangement or conspiracy to defraud the State. My transaction was above board, and was sanctioned by NICIL,” he said in a statement, adding, “I deny completely any involvement in any matter regarding the defrauding of the State, as, all along this transaction is perceived to be genuine and sacrosanct.”
The massive conspiracy to give away prime State lands by the A Partnership for National Unity/Alliance For Change (APNU/AFC) coalition, came to light late October with documents showing that Bond collected US$1 million for lands at Peters Hall, East Bank Demerara.
AG Nandlall revealed that Bond, who was at the centre of the questionable transactions, was listed as the lawyer on record for the drafting of three contracts – Doolall’s, Avalon Jagnanan of Life 1 Pharms Incorporated and Arken Group Inc.
The AG had revealed that 20 acres of land were leased for 20 years to Arken Group with its address listed as Third Street, Alberttown, Georgetown.
The lands referred to as Plots A1, A2, A3, and A4 amounted to 20.8 acres, which were not valuated prior to the signing of the lease on May 9, 2018, for an annual fee of US$16,224.
The land was later sold to a company connected to the oil and gas industry for US$1 million, which did not go to the owner, rather to the attorney on record.
Nandlall had said that the address for the company is the same address that Bond has listed on his bank account as his place of residence.
The State Lands Act of Guyana stipulates that when State lands are leased, the lease must state that the lessee must not part with possession without the consent of the landlord (the State) or shall not assign the interest in the lease without the consent of the landlord. If the lessee acts in contravention of that clause, then the State reserves the right to step in and repossess the lands.
However, in the case of the three agreements at Peters Hall, Bond, in drafting the lease agreements, changed that to state: “the lessee may assign, sublet, grant any licenses or otherwise part with the possession and/or purpose and/or dispose of the whole or any part of the demised property or any building or other erection at any time standing thereon or any right or privilege in relations thereto conferred by this agreement.”
On Tuesday, Guyana Times reported that Jagnanan said he was ready to operate with Police whenever he is called upon. His attorney Glenn Hanoman said that when his client reached out to the police after it was reported that he was being sought for questioning, the police informed them that they were not ready for him.