Lawyer: Former CEO ‘Was Terminated Lawfully’

January 29, 2019

Tawanna Wedderburn“The former CEO’s employment was terminated lawfully by the Council,” a lawyer acting for the Bermuda Health Council said today, adding that “the Council is prepared to robustly defend any legal proceedings that the former CEO may wish to bring in relation to the separation process.”

In December of last year, the Bermuda Health Council confirmed the “separation of employment” between the Council and its former CEO Tawanna Wedderburn.

Her husband Livingston Wedderburn recently released a letter to the press alleging that “Tawanna was mercilessly fired,” saying that in his view the “timing was clearly of strategic significance judging from the severe pressure to which she was subjected to settle the matter.”

He added that her 12 years’ service to the Council ended with “no prior warning.”

“It will not go unchallenged,” he added. “Limited resources will not prevent access to the courts. A judge will have the final say with the benefit of everyone’s spilled guts. The veil of secrecy is being removed as I write and it will be ripped to shreds until justice prevails.”

The Government has confirmed that, “The Minister of Health received notice of the proposed separation on 6th December 2018, and approved the recommendation in accordance with section 9[1] of the Bermuda Health Council Act 2004 on 7th December 2018. As an employment matter the Ministry will not comment further.”

In response, Juliana Snelling, Director of Canterbury Law, said, “In response to your various queries, Canterbury Law Limited acts for the BHeC in this matter.

“It is inappropriate to provide detailed comment to a matter that involves an individual’s personal employment situation which is expected to become sub judice imminently.

“The former CEO’s employment was terminated lawfully by the Council in full compliance with section 18[1][b] of the Employment Act 2000, the Bermuda Health Council Act 2004, and her contract of employment which calls for 1-month notice of termination.

“She was paid her notice and, as Ms. Wedderburn has disclosed to the press, in good faith she was offered 6 months’ pay [the maximum payable under the Employment Act 2000] plus extended benefits.

“The Council is prepared to robustly defend any legal proceedings that the former CEO may wish to bring in relation to the separation process which was lawful throughout.

“Aside from what is stated here, the Council is not prepared to descend to litigating this matter through the press or breach confidentiality,” she added.

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