APNU/AFC activist is alleged “mastermind” in GECOM’s Linden office fire

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APNU/AFC activist, Bryon Kendell

An activist of the main opposition –  APNU/AFC and former Community Development Officer (CDO), Bryon Kendell, has been identified by two men for being the mastermind behind the burning down of the Guyana Elections Commission (GECOM) Linden office last year. 

Kendell was appointed as the CDO in 2015, where he worked until 2019, after heading over to the National Drainage and Irrigation Authority (NDIA) as a Supervisor for Linden, but his tenure ended in early 2021. 

On Monday, the Guyana Police Force (GPF) arrested 23-year-old Teon February called ‘Nut,’ a labourer of Lot G5 Canvas City, Wismar Linden, and Marlon Hunter named ‘Bushy,’ 21, who resides at Fourth Street, Silver Town, Wismar Linden concerning the blaze.   

During integration, the duo confessed that it was Kendell who was the mastermind behind the blaze. As a result, he was arrested yesterday. 

This publication understands that after the men were taken into police custody, a video interview was conducted with February, who admitted to being involved. 

According to February, he was contacted by Kendall on July 13, 2020, who told him that he wanted him to burn the GECOM building. 

February said he then told his cousin Marlon Hunter to join him, and on the said night, sometime after 22:00 hours, Kendall picked them up in a silver Note motor car, and they drove to Burnham Drive, where Kendall pointed out the building to them. 

The man further added that Kendall told him that he wanted the building to burn the same night and that he would give them $150,000 on completion of the task. 

Kendall reportedly gave them a yellow five-gallon bottle of gas which he had in his car trunk at the time, and then left. February said they hid the gas in some nearby bushes a short distance from the GECOM building, and they went home.  

About midnight on July 14, 2020, he and his cousin Marlon left on foot and went to the building. On arrival, they collected the gas, entered the compound from a side gate, and gained access to the GECOM building from the back door. 

February said they then went to what appeared to be a storeroom in the upper flat of the building, where he threw the gas and lit the room on fire. 

After setting the room on fire, there was an explosion that caused them to receive burns on their feet – this is still visible on their bodies. 

The 23-year-old man said they escaped from the scene and went home and, upon arrival, told his three cousins, Tasha, Tash, and Talla, what transpired. 

He said Tasha assisted them with tending to the burns. The man further added that Kendall went to their home on the same night and gave him $75,000, which he gave to his cousin Marlon Hunter. 

The following morning, Kendall gave him the other $75,000. After that date, February said he saw Kendall several times, but he did not say anything about the incident. 

He added that Kendall told him that the reason for burning the building was because “GECOM was taking too long to swear in Mr David Granger.” 

Hunter was next interviewed on camera, and he supported the story told by February. Police investigators are also pursuing an official in Linden who is said to be the intellectual author behind the burning of the GECOM building. Investigations are in progress. GECOM building at Lot 2 Burnham Drive, Wismar, Linden, was set ablaze on July 14, 2020.

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