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Dr. Grace McLean sent on leave from Education Ministry

Opposition Spokesperson on Education Dr. Angela Brown Burke
 
The Gleaner is reporting that Dr. Grace McLean, the acting permanent secretary in the Ministry of Education, has been sent on leave.
 
Dr. McLean is at the centre of a damning report on fiduciary failings surrounding payment of more than $100 million to the Joint Committee on Tertiary Education (JCTE).
 
Auditor General Pamela Monroe Ellis has called for the police or an anti-corruption agency to conduct a probe following the transfer of the $124 million by the Ministry of Education to the JCTE under what it said were "questionable circumstances".
 
The Auditor General said the acting permanent secretary and another senior official failed in their fiduciary duty.
 
A Gleaner probe earlier this year also raised questions about Dr. McLean's role in the oversight of two programmes - the Career Advancement Programme (CAP) and the Centre of Occupational Studies (COS).
 
According to the Gleaner, Dr. McLean was responsible for CAP and COS, which had partnered with the Joint Committee for Tertiary Education.
 
Questions about the award of contracts and conflicts of interest prompted Education Minister Fayval Williams to ask the Auditor General's Department to expand its investigation of the ministry to include the programmes.
 
Earlier on Wednesday, Opposition Spokesperson on Education Dr. Angela Brown Burke had called for Dr. Grace Mclean to step aside while investigations are conducted into the activities which took place under her watch as Chief Education Officer.
 
Dr. Brown Burke said this will allow for full and unhindered probing of the allegations.
 
The Opposition spokesperson, who speaking in an an interview with Radio Jamaica News, said it is worrying that Dr. McLean has again been named in another probe as "either an individual with responsibility or an individual who should have seen or should have done something." 
 
Dr. Brown Burke lamented the allegations dogging the Education Ministry, noting that taxpayers' money that should be going to boards and agencies "to put it in service of our students and on behalf of the people of Jamaica" is instead "going to connected parties". 
 
 


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