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Union Boss Knew Of ‘Lords Of Doom’

Former Bahamas Electrical Workers Union president Paul Maynard. (File photo)

Former Bahamas Electrical Workers Union president Paul Maynard. (File photo)

By TANYA SMITH-CARTWRIGHT

tsmith-cartwright@tribunemedia.net

FORMER union president at Bahamas Power and Light Paul Maynard has told The Tribune he was aware of the “dope smoking” actions of “Lords of Doom” and had warned them the union would not stand by them if the company took action against them.

The Tribune reported yesterday how former BPL foreman, Terrance Penn, was fired for permitting workers he supervised to “pay him for favours” and “allowing staff to do as they pleased” in return. He took legal action against BPL, however, on November 3 a Supreme Court ruling by Justice Ian Winder dismissed his case. The group of workers referred to themselves as “Lords of Doom”.

During the hearing Mr. Penn’s legal team brought on several witnesses from BPL to plead his case. That soon backfired when the witnesses, members of the “Lords of Doom” all concurred that the acts of “boozing and dope smoking” in fact took place and were covered up by Mr. Penn in return for payment.

“The union is not a get-out-of-jail-free card,” said Paul Maynard, former president, Bahamas Electrical Workers Union.

“Every meeting I had, I always told members that all scams and schemes should cease and desist from them. I told them, I do not want to know what they are doing, but if they are doing it they need to stop it because I for one will not be representing you if you get caught. The union is not a get-out-of-jail-free card and will not be used that way. That was my stance in that whole situation.”

Mr. Maynard, in charge of the BEWU at the time the drinking and cannabis smoking incidents occurred, said those involved could never have expected him to represent them after he repeatedly warned his members against misbehaviour while at work.

“They could not have expected me to make representation to the DPM, which was (Hon. Philip) “Brave” Davis at the time, or (Hon.) Desmond Bannister (Minister of Works) on their behalf when he took over,” Mr. Maynard insisted.

“I don’t believe in that. I think we had too many important issues that we had to deal with as opposed to getting people out (of trouble) who doing foolishness. That was my stance.

“I was the union head at the time and I gave my opinion. No one listened to me, so it is what it is. My opinion was that I do not condone wrong doing. I don’t. I saw wrong doing going on and I don’t condone wrong doing. They talked on themselves so obviously they were doing it.”

“If I was drinking and dope smoking and I talked on myself, then obviously it was going on,” Mr. Maynard concluded. “Obviously the guy’s rights had to be protected. Everyone has a right to fairness, but me, personally, I do not condone wrong doing. I just don’t.”

The “Lords of Doom”, stationed at BPL’s Clifton Pier plant, are said to have been allowed by Mr. Penn, to take their party of weed and booze near to the nearby sea during working hours, all for a fee.

The troubled power company, plagued with power outages and historical scandals, recently conducted a Voluntary Separation Employment Package that was criticised for the amounts of money allotted to some of the separated employees and the fact that many key staff were let go who then had to be brought back as paid consultants.

“If I was drinking and dope smoking and I talked on myself, then obviously it was going on,” Mr. Maynard concluded. “Obviously the guy’s rights had to be protected. Everyone has a right to fairness, but me, personally, I do not condone wrong doing. I just don’t.”

Comments

Topdude 2 months, 1 week ago

And there are those who support the legalization of marijuana? I would like to know how many Bahamians go to work under the influence of this dangerous drug? I would like to know how much productivity is lost from individuals who are stoned and unfocused on the duties they are assigned to?

The effects of marijuana on the mind is not like an automobile where you can turn it off and on at the turn of a key. The scientific evidence shows that the effects impact your mind for at least twelve hours. And it is so addictive that once the high starts to subside the user needs another hit. This is why the workers at BPL were getting stoned. What then are the implications for the workplace?

Clearly the BPL saga is a case in point. Just how many of our institutions and organizations have similar behaviors taking place?

As for the use of alcohol this is just as dangerous. At BPL for example, a drunk employee is unable to be vigilant in monitoring highly complex equipment which requires diligence. And the deleterious impact of being high and drunk on the job just blows your mind, no pun intended.

I would not like my child to be taught by a drunk or stoned teacher just as I would not the quality of the water I am drinking to be monitored by a worker who is loaded.

The BPL case is a blessing in disguise. This the time for the nation to do something about drugs and drink in the workplace. And the rabid call for the legalization of marijuana. Please, this is A life and death issue.

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xtreme2x 2 months, 1 week ago

are you speaking of marijuana or crack? (cocaine, whit lady)

My experience in marijuana is far different from what you describing.

Now on the other hand. COOK COCAINE (crack, white lady) may be what you are referring to.

Have you ever tried either?

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Topdude 2 months, 1 week ago

I am referring to the WORKPLACE. Not your home, your car, on the beach ( when you are off duty), in the yard or any private personal space. Somehow you are unable to differentiate between the two. And this is precisely why we lack productivity and efficiency in our organizations. Please do not get away from the point. No DRUGS or Drinking on the Job. No drugged or drunk employee on the job. Are these regulations an infringement on your personal freedoms? Then if this is the case let us just go back to being primitive and aboriginal. And We will no longer need formal organizations to provide us with food, clothing and shelter or safety and security. Please let us be serious about the WORKPLACE.

The discussion about whether marijuana should be legalized or decriminalized is for a day.

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benniesun 2 months, 1 week ago

@Topdude - You rant about the so called dangers of marijuana so much so that you give the impression of being rabid about your opposition. The root problem is addiction. There are many addicted to porn, gambling (casinos are a big attraction for our country), alcohol (which ages and destroys our bodies), night life-clubbing (which is immoral), gorging with food, giving seed money to the church as opposed to taking care of one's home, covetousness, other harmful prescription and more potent drugs, etc.. These are the ills of our society and if we can live a balanced life these may diminish to insignificance. Your energies could be best used to ensure that each one of us get to live a balanced fulfilling life in which we do not turn to crutches and become addicted in order to escape this bleak existence based on scarcity (capitalism).

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tribanon 2 months, 1 week ago

@benniesun: You incorrectly assume everyone has the will power to over come whatever addictive tendencies they may be predisposed to from the time of birth. Do you also assume that being gay, transgender, etc. is something that one can overcome by living a balanced fulfilling life? Of course not. And that's why it's incumbent on every civilised society to recognize that public policy must properly address innate addictive tendencies that could prove harmful to oneself or dangerous to others in society. We failed at doing so with alcohol (liquor store or bar on every street) and gambling (webshops everywhere). The last thing we need is to now add legalized marijuana to our mix of societal woes thereby making it much easier to acquire and recreationally use. Keep in mind to that today's genetically engineered marijuana strains are many many times more potent and harmful than even a decade ago.

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benniesun 2 months, 1 week ago

@tribanon - We are all products of our environment, and whenever circumstances change people will change - some more than others. There are treatments for drug addiction which are not in big pharma's arsenal (no money to be made from it) - however it is very easy for addiction to return if a person is stuck in the same bleak or unmanageable circumstances which produced it. I did not assume anything about the gay transgender thing as it is a spiritual possession that will be sorted out by the Supreme Being. I agree with you on the GMO marijuana and I am against anything GMO, but marijuana is more useful and less destructive than alcohol. There is a deeper agenda afoot that has put all psychedelics off limits to the general public - even for traditional use.

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tribanon 2 months, 1 week ago

Paul Maynard has told The Tribune he was aware of the “dope smoking” actions of “Lords of Doom” and had warned them the union would not stand by them if the company took action against them.

Maynard then said, “Every meeting I had, I always told members that all scams and schemes should cease and desist from them. I told them, I do not want to know what they are doing, but if they are doing it they need to stop it because I for one will not be representing you if you get caught. The union is not a get-out-of-jail-free card and will not be used that way. That was my stance in that whole situation.”

Maynard concluded his interview with The Tribune by saying, “Every meeting I had, I always told members that all scams and schemes should cease and desist from them. I told them, I do not want to know what they are doing, but if they are doing it they need to stop it because I for one will not be representing you if you get caught. The union is not a get-out-of-jail-free card and will not be used that way. That was my stance in that whole situation.”

The quotes immediately above show that Paul Maynard by his own admission knew all about the wrongdoing, fraudulent activities and other criminal conduct of Mr. Penn and the other members of the so called 'Lords of Doom' while he was union president of the BEWU. Yet Maynard chose to remain silent and not report these most serious matters to either the appropriate authorities or senior management officials at BPL. And Maynard seems completely oblivious to the fact that his own misconduct in not reporting these matters was tantamount to him aiding and abetting the defrauding of BPL by Mr. Penn and the 'Lords of the Doom', not to mention facilitating their egregious violations of important BPL safety rules and regulations.

Maynard has confessed to The Tribune that he was quite content as union president at the time to simply turn a blind eye and remain silent about the criminal activities of Mr. Penn and the other members of the 'Lords of Doom'. This confession is sufficient evidence in and of itself for him to be charged as an accomplice to all of the criminal acts BPL and the courts now have full knowledge of.

Are the appropriate authorities and the courts now also going to turn a blind eye to all of this? It certainly seems Penn and Maynard are going to be allowed to continue walking around as uncharged free men. Where's the justice? Simply unbelievable!!

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sheeprunner12 2 months, 1 week ago

Penn was disengaged ............. according to the lawsuit.

Maynard should be charged as well ......... he knew and remained silent. he is the perfect example of what a "union" leader should not be. His feeble protest after the facts have been publicized is not worth listening to or even accepting as plausible or credible.

Now, Penn & Maynard will (probably) walk away with big $$$ retirement packages .......... and the "lords of doom" will have a ballsless boss to thank for continuing to have a job with big perks ........ meanwhile, BPL has all of us (suckers) on the hook for $1billion debt & other costs.

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trueBahamian 2 months, 1 week ago

Mr. Maynaed can't be serious with this bull. Why did the Tribune publish this garbage. All.of the persons involved in this abuse of taxpayers should be jailed. Is this why there was a fire at Clifton Pier? Is this why we have so many power outages? Is this why when issues arise it can't be fixed in a timely manner? We, the twxpers, are paying for this nonsense. Please audit BPL. Reduce staff immediately. Implement mandatory drug testing. Hire qualified people who are serious about their job.

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Topdude 2 months, 1 week ago

Absolutely. Random and mandatory drug testing is required. One strike, your are immediately terminated. No recourse, no excuse and no appeal.

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