Today I had a conversation that I cannot help but link to two telephone calls I made yesterday. If in fact today’s conversation is linked to my calls yesterday, then we have the frightening possibility of illegal wire-tapping of telephone calls made by law-abiding citizens.
The calls were about the New Guyana Company Limited, the publishers of the Mirror newspaper. I am aware that my mother, of whose estate I am the executor, was a modest investor in the company which was launched some time in the 1950s or ’60s. Indeed,according to ancient records in the Companies Registry, her name, Mrs Jankie Ram, is recorded on Folio 859 of the company’s share register, the same folio on which appears the name of my late brother Ivan Ram.
My examination of these public records was revealing. The New Guyana Company Limited has not been filing any annual returns for close to two decades, and from all appearances has not been holding any annual general meetings, as I am sure my mother would have notified me. To make matters worse, under the Securities Industry Act 1998, the New Guyana Company Limited is a public company with stringent reporting obligations. I can also say that I saw no evidence that the company was continued under the Companies Act 1991 although that may reflect deficiencies in record-keeping rather than non-compliance.
These point to a form of serious corporate fraud on the investors in the company and a disregard of the companies and securities laws of the country. As executor of my mother’s estate, I am consulting with legal counsel on options to restore and protect the rights of what may turn out to be approximately two thousand investors and to ensure that our laws are observed.
On the wider issue of wire-tapping, it is would seem that politically connected persons who might have an interest in concealing the malfeasances of the company might have intercepted my telephone conversation.