General Manager Doug Hoyte has been relieved of his duties at the state-owned Caribbean Broadcasting Corporation (CBC).
It’s the latest in a series of high-profile separations that have occurred since the Barbados Labour Party (BLP) took office following the May 24 general elections.
First to go was General Manager of the National Housing Corporation Lanette Napolean-Young, who was given her walking papers nearly a month ago, along with Human Resource Manager Sheona Kellman and attorney Toni Jones-Patterson.
Earlier this week, it also emerged that Transport Board General Manager Sandra Forde, who led the state-owned public transportation agency for the past eight years, had accepted a separation package, while two consultants, including Trinidadian David Bartholomew, had their contracts terminated with immediate effect.
Now Hoyte has become the latest Democratic Labour Party appointee to be shown the door by the Mia Mottley led Government.
“I don’t understand, I’m sitting at my desk at CBC,” an upbeat sounding Hoyte told Barbados TODAY this morning when asked to confirm reports that he had been handed his walking papers.
However, rumours of his demise persisted throughout the day, and by 2 p.m. a memo was issued to staff confirming that the CBC head had been shown the door. Efforts to get an official comment from Minister of Information and Broadcasting Affairs Lucille Moe were unsuccessful.
The brief memo said Hoyte and the board had agreed to a “mutual and amicable separation”.
In the interim, Deputy General Manager Rodwell London will act as general manager, it added.
Hoyte, who took up the post in April 2016, was previously the lead news anchor for the radio, television and cable outfit and a former host of CBC’s Mornin Barbados. A former director of communications at the Almond Resorts, he was also director of news at an American media house.
Ironically, there were rumours back in January that Hoyte had resigned from CBC.
However, he had immediately dismissed those reports saying “I am not going anywhere!” while brushing aside speculation that he had either resigned from the position at the helm of the state run corporation or that he would not be serving out his three-year contract, which was due to end in March 2019.
“It is not true that I have resigned,” Hoyte had told Barbados TODAY in response to a news report by Starcom Network that he was stepping down.
In fact, Hoyte had said then he had no intention of resigning, because he had work to do in turning around the financial and operating fortunes of the cash-strapped radio and television entity.
Asked then if he would be willing to stay on at the corporation after the next election, the veteran broadcaster said: “As long as they want me I will stay,” adding that he intended to serve out his full three-year term.
In recent months, the state-run CBC has been struggling to meet its freelance and other payments with customers complaining on the company’s multi-choice television (MCTV) Facebook page about the loss of cable channels after the corporation, which has been airing a number of imported Japanese and African programmes, recently boasted about switching its main channel – Channel 8 – to HD.