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Murray threatens legal action against THA

Angus Murray is the man at the center of a simmering row over the termination of his 18-month contract at the Buccoo Integrated Facility (BIF) after a mere three months on the job last December.

Murray, who is from Santa Cruz Trinidad, was hired as Facility Manager in September last year.

The aggrieved man is now threatening legal action against the Tobago House of Assembly (THA) for breach of contract following his dismissal via a letter dated December 5, 2011 from the Office of the Chief Secretary.

Speaking with Tobago News last week Friday, Murray described his termination as harsh, oppressive and unwarranted and is demanding close to a $1 million payoff, as the balance of his salary for the contracted period.

Armed with an attaché of documents including letters and email correspondences between himself and key officials of the THA, Murray who holds university degrees in architecture and public health and safety, vehemently denied allegations that he had breached any protocol regarding the use of the salutation "Honorable" when addressing Chief Secretary Orville London.

"As I was new here, all I did was telephone the protocol office seeking clarification on the matter, as it was not listed on the national table of precedence and salutations of public offices," he related.

"A few days later, I received a letter dated November 22, from the Buccoo Integrated Facility Management Committee (BIFMC), stating that based on that telephone conversation with the person in the Protocol Department, I had questioned the term "honourable" used in the context of the Chief Secretary," he said.

"Can you imagine that a telephone conversation was the basis to initiate my dismissal?" he cried.

The warning letter stated that the BIFMC viewed Murray's actions as "very unfortunate and certainly a breach of protocol" on his part.

"We would like to advise you to refrain from any such action in the future and ask that as the Facility Manager you maintain the relevant respect for the Chief Secretary of the Tobago House of Assembly. The committee is pleased with your hard work and certain proactive initiatives you've undertaken. However, the committee must warn you that any similar breach of protocol in the future would be viewed in a very serious manner," asserted the letter.

In his response dated November 28, Murray categorically denied the alleged breach of protocol and viewed the allegation as an assassination of his character without just cause. He was, however, promptly fired on December 6, with immediate effect.

"Your services as the Facility Manager of the Buccoo Integrated Facility will no longer be required. In this regard, in accordance with the guidelines for contract employment, you would be paid one month salary in lieu of notice. Thank you for the services you have rendered while in the employ of the Tobago House of Assembly," concluded the termination letter.

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Andy Will said on Sunday, Feb 5 at 12:12 AM

Fat cat in what? Anonymous...who are you really? A man believes he was treated unfairly which happens to all of us at some point in time. What is your point?

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Andy Will said on Thursday, Feb 2 at 8:50 PM

These people will use every nook and cranny for political mileage. steups....They will want to say that London was responsible for the man's firing yet this entire article points to a Committee that was in charge of the facility. It is the Committee you have to look at....not London...steups.

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Andy Will said on Thursday, Feb 2 at 8:04 AM

Long Mango, where in this article does it hint that the PNM is the problem. Is it that you are from Trinidad with a vested interest in this current administration that you are hell bent on seeing the PNM leave office. The PP is not doing a great job running T&T right now and we need a stronger opposition.

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Long Mango said on Wednesday, Feb 1 at 10:31 AM

Pain Pain,Pain ALL over Tobago, when will it end it is time for surgery and let us get the CANCER PNM out of Tobago.Only then will our pain cease. Quite frankly i do not believe that Mr Murray woe brutally dismissed because of a breached in protocol. It has to do with some thing other that. The PNM CANNOT SPEAK OR WRITE any credible reasons for firing the goodly Gentle Man,but it wont be long before he is adequately compensated for a dismissal which is oppressive, harsh,wrongful and just stupid. Again let me express the pains that is been imposed on us by the PNM is unprecednted.it will never happen again go nah London go nah please give the young people a break.

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bagodude said on Wednesday, Feb 1 at 9:36 AM

So where is Minister CP from originally????

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bagoman said on Wednesday, Feb 1 at 7:23 AM

That picture aint looking like no indian

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Spy Peters said on Wednesday, Feb 1 at 7:09 AM

The B.I.F had a major meeting yesterday at the facility to discuss this issue and other plans of action, not one person directed the Chairman of his wrong doings everyone is so enslave.

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Pundit said on Tuesday, Jan 31 at 10:31 PM

Is their an alternative view to this argument?

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Africa said on Tuesday, Jan 31 at 10:24 PM

Mr. Murray, please present to us bloggers, the African facts as you see fit.

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Vidya said on Tuesday, Jan 31 at 10:05 PM

Mr. Murray, I am glad to see you in the news but I wasn't hoping it was for this reason.

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Tony Albert said on Tuesday, Jan 31 at 10:03 PM

Mr. Murray have no fear, you will get another job soon. Just pray to God and let Him deal with it for you.

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Toronto man said on Tuesday, Jan 31 at 6:56 PM

What are the terms and conditions of Mr. Murray's contract that caused him to be fired for the word 'honourable'.

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Punnie said on Tuesday, Jan 31 at 5:59 PM

What is there to sit down and Iron out Foreigner it is not clothes you are dealing with.

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Responding to illiterates said on Tuesday, Jan 31 at 5:56 PM

What an illiterate, say nothing if you have nothing to say @ Patriotic, the only tail that will go between any legs are yours.

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Legal Battle said on Tuesday, Jan 31 at 5:54 PM

UNC’s MP for Nariva Harry Partap and Newsday Tuesday, April 3 2007 won a landmark judgment in the High Court regarding the right of an individual to respond to public attack and the responsibility of a newspaper to make available to the public, the reply to such attack. If them think they have the right to take the manager to court for exposing them let them take this. Careful Sir. with your threats remember election is on your door steps.

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Patriotic said on Tuesday, Jan 31 at 4:54 PM

People getting fired down here in Trini for nothing, let Murray put his tail between his legs and cool he self.

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Foreigner said on Tuesday, Jan 31 at 1:31 PM

Mr.Murray and J.A. should get together and iron out their differences

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bagoman said on Monday, Jan 30 at 10:55 PM

I agree that there's more to this story, which would come out in time so lets stay tuned!

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JJ said on Monday, Jan 30 at 10:30 PM

dust in you face do you have a problem with people from Santa Cruz?

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Jon Arnaldo said on Monday, Jan 30 at 10:27 PM

Club rankin this issue real hot for Tobago. People the world over reading the tobago news.

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dust in you face said on Monday, Jan 30 at 10:27 PM

what is all the fuss? IS THIS MAN FROM SANTA CRUZ ... God, people get fired all the time......is there an uproar.?...come on get real people.......get all the facts......Respect is important ........

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Club rankin said on Monday, Jan 30 at 10:20 PM

I agree with Winston Murray, there must be more in the mortar than the pestle...anyway this whole story aint worth the time of day.....we have so many more important issues to deal with in Tobago

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Kendell John said on Monday, Jan 30 at 9:07 PM

I agree with Calder Hall Voter

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Roosevelt said on Monday, Jan 30 at 9:04 PM

I wish Mr. Murray well in this matter. He will win his case

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Hubbard said on Monday, Jan 30 at 8:59 PM

Mr. Murray I wish you well

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James A r n o l d said on Monday, Jan 30 at 8:59 PM

Interesting story

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Calder Hall Voter said on Monday, Jan 30 at 8:59 PM

People let's keep to the facts here. A wrong was done, which we need to highlight. if we degenerate into name calling we will lose the point of the article. By the way, thanks to Adamson Charles for exposing this one.

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Jack Arnold said on Monday, Jan 30 at 8:58 PM

Interesting story indeed

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J.A. said on Monday, Jan 30 at 8:43 PM

See you in court

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Tobago said on Monday, Jan 30 at 6:01 PM

Mr. Murray will win his case. I am sure of that

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Winston Murray said on Monday, Jan 30 at 5:58 PM

Local MEDIA, be careful as to your influence. Be imparial and not be influenced. Come with the news. If locals cannot do it, the foreign press may be happy to deal with the facts. (Fed up with corruption and bobbal- ignore the first word in our Anthem: "FORGED"!)

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Winston Murray said on Monday, Jan 30 at 5:44 PM

The time has come for me to break my deep silence over this affair. From investigations, I am more than satisfied that the "ratio decendi" in the dismissal of Angus Murray is not a protocol issue. There is much more to this requiring a thorough investigation/intervention into the "modus operandi" of the so called Tobago House of Assembly. This is a matter for the Prime Minister to engage serious attention. This is not idiot thing. It requires to ranking attention. I am certain, without a doubt that even the local Police may not be qualified to deal with this. From all appearances, the THA is one big happy united family (all related in some way). I repeat, he head of Government need to seriously intervene into this situation, not for the sake of Angus Murray but generally speaking, as the saying goes, "there is more in the mortar than pestle." This is a matter to which I am closely following. Please authorities deal with this matter, not Angus Murray but the wider spectrum.

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Matty said on Monday, Jan 30 at 4:28 PM

Express Head, clearly you are now well educated on the subject of contention. Documentary evidence is available to support every statement made. The THA and JA do have the opportunity to respond as well and is invited to present the supporting documents to support their arguement. Documents of correspondences between the Manager and various media companies were under scrutuny.Evidence is there to suggest corruption I suggest you let the court decide. The Manager is committed to working with the media every step of the way, so I am sure we will be well informed of the court proceedings.

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delite said on Monday, Jan 30 at 3:54 PM

The truth shall prevail ...tobagonians stand up for what is right...tomorrow it might be you...your jobs and livelihood should not be gambled with

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truth fuh so said on Monday, Jan 30 at 3:46 PM

its amazing how much people fail to verify and validate information....prove all things....the bible says and get all the facts...do not JUDGE...TOBAGONIANS STAND UP FOR TOBAGONIANS

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the virginian said on Monday, Jan 30 at 3:25 PM

Express Head,do you care to explain why you support removing this article from the website?Remember,evil men dwell in darkness. A handful of my expat buddies and I were discussing this episode and were dismayed by the heavy-handedness of the THA.What's going on in Tobago?Such is the expected behavior,though,of a ruler,the THA,with seemingly absolute and unchallenged power and authority over the governed.In other words,only the THA knows what's best for Tobagonians.C'mon Tobagonians,wake-up,speak-up for tomorrow it might just be one of you--your job on the line due to the whims and fancies of a bunch of Lenin-like parvenues and amateurs.

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Investigator said on Monday, Jan 30 at 3:09 PM

You have to first examine the actions of the Committee then the THA. It would be the committee to recommend the termination of the Manager's contract to the THA. The Committee and the Supervisor in charge of this Manager must be held accountable for this unsavory mistake.

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ashamed said on Monday, Jan 30 at 3:00 PM

THA and Arnold ent looking good right now, what a shame and disgrace

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cynical said on Monday, Jan 30 at 2:58 PM

the tobago news should be commended for bringing this type of issues to the public. it just goes to show that not everybody can be bought, ok channel 5

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Express Head said on Monday, Jan 30 at 1:52 PM

The Tobago News should remove this article off their website.

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Peeps said on Monday, Jan 30 at 1:28 PM

THA Head is PNM but the rest of people working below the Head is TOP people. TOP aint going to be looking good either.

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Mr. Bowers said on Monday, Jan 30 at 1:18 PM

I called the B.I.F. today to speak with JA on the subject and was also looking for information on the process to rent the Bar. I was shaken by the information I received: I was told that the Bar will be personally be registered in JA Name and is taken by the only female Committee member and her family. THA please help me on this one.Thanks

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Boy John said on Monday, Jan 30 at 1:13 PM

I am getting calls from readers in the UK, USA, Canada and the wider Caribbean good publicity for THA, good political Milage for the PNM and THA. This what we call wetting. I understand that this will be broadcast on air on TV6 in Trinidad later this week.

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Sandyman said on Monday, Jan 30 at 1:11 PM

This article is just making things even worse for the THA

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Powder said on Monday, Jan 30 at 1:10 PM

Sir. London is not interested in transperancy,as 2012/13 is an election year, he is more interested in looking good. Lately his appearance is so beautiful you will believe that he is in a beauty contest with Brigo.

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Nickosy said on Monday, Jan 30 at 1:00 PM

Tomorrow I will publish the Interview Panel results score sheet for Mr. Murray interview process. This along with the 2 other employees of the BIF will also be made public. Mr. Muray was the most qualified person for the position.

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informed said on Monday, Jan 30 at 12:58 PM

i hope the real perpetrators are brought to justice, I think Mr. Murray Is doing the right thing, someone has to start the process and these rogues have to stop!

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joe said on Monday, Jan 30 at 12:53 PM

I was reliably informed that J.A threatened channel 5 not to air an interview with Mr. Murray. If this is true, isn't it an offence to interfere with freedom of the press. so why isn't J.A relieved of his position as yet ?

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exposed said on Monday, Jan 30 at 12:50 PM

It is about time Mr. London address the people of tobago on this matter since it is now receiving international coverage. i am an upright law abiding citizen in tobago and i am embarrassed that this type of uncouth behaviour is affecting us as a nation

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David said on Monday, Jan 30 at 12:49 PM

I do hope Mr. Murray wins his case. It looks legit.

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nahboy said on Monday, Jan 30 at 12:43 PM

Mr. Murray is a good and decent man. i met with him to discuss a booth and he was very helpful and willing to assist the villagers of buccoo...Ms. Peters saying how she husband getting the bar to run...is that perks too for sleeping with u ?

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Nokia fella said on Monday, Jan 30 at 12:40 PM

This story is now news in the United Kingdom and it is now a big embarrassment to the people of Tobago. Most likely the Tourism sector will be affected as foreigners are viewing Tobago as a corrupted island.

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pies in prison said on Monday, Jan 30 at 12:36 PM

Channel 5 should exercise freedom of the press and air the interview... or are they the victim of bullying from key officials of the THA

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truthful said on Monday, Jan 30 at 12:27 PM

this matter is receiving a lot of attention in trinidad and tobago. yesterday morning Mr. Umbala raised concerns after reading the entire article on the air. Mr. honourable J.A should explain to the island why he went to channel 5 and cuss the people because they wanted to air an interview with Mr. Murray...the people should be told the truth and J.A should be held answerable!

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Bowers said on Monday, Jan 30 at 9:50 AM

All comments were removed due to limited freedom of press. Tobago local TV station was due to air an interview with Mr. Murray last Tuesday over this issue however the big wig JA stop the media form broadcasting the story. Now it is have to move to Crime Watch, this is what they WETTING!

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Peeps said on Sunday, Jan 29 at 4:43 PM

J.A. will be in a lot of hot water pretty soon. He went to Church this morning praying hard with beads of perspiration coming down his face. J. A. is worried about the consequences of his actions because he know he is going to loose this case.

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Anonymous said on Saturday, Jan 28 at 7:29 PM

Weren't there Tobagonians with the necessary qualifications to fill this position in the first place? Anyhow if this was the basis of termination, I think Mr. Murrary has a good case and should proceed with his legag action.

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the virginian said on Saturday, Jan 28 at 7:27 PM

Because of the gravity of this matter,I hope Orville London doesn't remain silent inasmuch as he wasn't directly addressed and involved.Show how big a man he truly is,not thin-skinned,and return Mr. Murray to his job that he seems to be competently performing. Remember,Brutus,too,was an "honorable"man.Yes,Brutus. Having said all of the above,if the contract that Mr.Murray entered into expressly states that he could be disciplined or even terminated for merely mentioning Orville London's name sans the prefix'honorable'in a work-related environment,his disobedience could perhaps be sufficient grounds for termination.But without knowing anything else,is this circumstance,as explained,really just cause for termination,regardless?You decide. This man deserves to keep his job.Give him a break.Are you guys in the THA intoxicated with power?Gosh,I don't think so but this one reeks.

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Peeps said on Saturday, Jan 28 at 6:11 PM

J.A. boy, I feeling is you who will get shaft over this issue.

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CONSCIOUSTRINGONIAN said on Saturday, Jan 28 at 3:44 PM

IS THERE no due process???? Is it based only on how one person or persons interpreted a telephone call??/

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bagoman said on Saturday, Jan 28 at 3:14 PM

Whoaaa MINISTER CS....how yuh brazen so? by now the big house finished! Ahhh JA yuh reputation over getting stink on d super highway!

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