Questions surround CMU's relationship with Hydel University

There's a call for Caribbean Maritime University (CMU), Council Chairman Hyacinth Bennett to say whether she disclosed the contract Hydel University had with the CMU before she was appointed to head the Council. 

Yesterday, Hydel which is headed by Mrs Bennett, confirmed it had an arrangement with the Caribbean Maritime Institute, CMI, prior to the institution being upgraded to a university.

But it said the contract started in December 2015 under the People's National Party (PNP)  administration and before the appointment of  Mrs Bennett as Chairman of  the Council.

Former education minister in the PNP administration, Ronald Thwaites, wants to know whether the required disclosures were made.

“She would have had to make disclosure under existing contractual relationship of her company of CMU , when she was being considered as chairman, and that would have had to been cleared.”

He also questions whether steps were taken to ensure Hydel enjoyed no special treatment because of  Mrs Bennett's position on the University's Council.

“Provided that she had recused herself from any decision to do that and it was on terms and conditions that gave no favour to Hydel, then , her institution and CMU would have been appropriate places for the Career Advancement Programme to be undertaken,” Thwaites, a former minister of education. 

Hydel University and the then School of  Advanced Skills at the CMI had a memorandum of  understanding in place since December 2015, under the Career Advancement Programme.

Hydel says on January 31, 2018 it wrote to CMI terminating the arrangement citing concern about the maintenance of  the facilities and other student related matters. 

Hydel issued a statement yesterday after questions were raised on Wednesday at Parliament's Public Administration and Appropriations Committee about whether it was benefiting from a contract with the CMU.


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