UB internal audit finds irregularities at HR Department

The findings of an internal payroll audit at the University of Belize (UB) has found serious irregularities at the  university’s Human Resource Department.

UB President, Dr. Cary Frazer, ordered the audit and its findings will be the subject of an emergency meeting of the UB Faculty and Staff Association (UBFSA) on Friday, October 19.

According to a UB source who spoke to The Reporter on condition of anonymity, Human Resource Director Herta Gentle has given herself a salary increase within a period of one year.

All five employees at the HR Department have also received salary increases, except one individual who  retired and was later re-hired at a lower pay scale.

Internal sources are confirming from e-mails that the Chairperson of the UB’s Board of Trustees  apparently has knowledge about what has transpired at the HR Department.

One e-mail makes mention of a gratuity for the HR director. Another queried double-dipping on the part of the HR director.

In one of the emails, the chairperson wanted to know if the HR Director was satisfied with the new contract that was being presented to her.

The UB source says that Dr. Corinth Lewis is the interim president who signed off on the new pay scale for the HR Director.

The UB Faculty and Staff Association (UBFSA) has been monitoring this case for some time now and has all of the evidence, our source said.

The UBFSA is getting ready to demand that the HR director be suspended and that the Board of Trustees chairperson explain the situation at the HR Department, reports say.

Initially, the HR director was hired on a contract with a salary of $51,000 per annum. But Gentle did not sign that contract, which she allegedly mentioned in an e-mail.

Our source said the university has a policy  that if an employee has  not signed a contract, then she should not be paid.

While that initial contract is not in the HR director’s file, Gentle’s new contract for $61,000 per annum is.

Apart from her hefty increase, the letter from the outgoing interim president says that Gentle is now appointed HR Director, as opposed to being employed on a contractual basis.

The UB source says that the post of HR Director was never meant to be a permanent post. The initial hiring contract was for three years only.

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