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Transport Authority MD, Willard Hylton, resigns, again Loop Jamaica

Black Immigrant Daily News

Managing Director of the Transport Authority (TA), Willard Hylton has resigned, again.

The resignation was confirmed by Acting Corporate Communications Manager at the TA, Merdina Callum, when contacted by Loop News on Monday.

Callum also confirmed that Hylton was on leave and was due to return to work Monday, December 5, but, instead, tendered his resignation.

The development comes five months after Hylton withdrew an earlier resignation notice that was due to take effect on June 30 this year, when he cited “poor leadership” from the office of the General Manager for Operations.

At that time, the TA staff and members of the public transport sector, including bus and taxi operators, publicly voiced their support for Hylton, who they described as the “best managing director” the Authority has seen.

His latest resignation all but confirmed that issues may still exist.

In a lengthy letter addressed to “colleagues”, which was obtained by Loop News, Hylton was scathing in his criticism of management.

“The fact is that over time, I have developed an abhorrence for laziness, incompetence and excuses from some persons, especially in leadership positions at the Authority, as this places additional responsibilities on other leaders who have to double up on the duties they are being called upon to perform,” Hylton’s letter said, in part.

“I remain firm in my view that every single employee, (barring none) should be treated equally and be held to the same standards of performance and accountability, it is evident that this does not sit well with a few of my managers who chose to take their dissatisfaction with this position, to the highest level of the Ministry of Transport and Mining and elsewhere in the public,” Hylton added.

According to the now former managing director, “For any organisation to fully transform, it requires fresh and new thinking, firstly from those who lead. Sadly, what exists in the mindset of some leaders at the Authority, in my view, represents remnants of our colonial past, which oftentimes get in the way of the realisation of the vision for the Transport Authority and by extension, the sector. I have given it my best shot.”

In June, when he tentatively withdrew his resignation, Hylton told the media that he did so at the request of the Transport Authority board. He said a five-member committee was set up by the board to examine and seek to address his concerns.

But, he also warned then, that “failure of the board to deal with these issues will leave me with no choice but to reconsider my position”.

See Hylton’s full letter below:

Dear Colleagues,

“I can confirm rumours that have been circulating in the public domain for the past two to three weeks that I will not be returning to the Transport Authority at the end of my vacation leave.

I have indicated to the Chairman of the Board of Directors that given the present situation and also, this growing need I have to redefine my purpose. I do not wish to renew my contract of employment when it expires on December 3, 2022.

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I think that one of the reasons the organisation has been able to achieve much in the last two (2) years, is that as your leader, I have never felt the need to betray myself for you to accept me. As colleagues, we have always been provided opportunities for us to say how we feel. Today, it should be no different.

The fact is that over time, I have developed an abhorrence for laziness, incompetence and excuses from some persons, especially in leadership positions at the Authority, as this places additional responsibilities on other leaders who have to double up on the duties they are being called upon to perform.

I remain firm in my view that every single employee, (barring none) should be treated equally and be held to the same standards of performance and accountability, it is evident that this does not sit well with a few of my managers who chose to take their dissatisfaction with this position, to the highest level of the Ministry of Transport and Mining and elsewhere in the public.

For any organisation to fully transform, it requires fresh and new thinking, firstly from those who lead. Sadly, what exists in the mindset of some leaders at the Authority, in my view, represents remnants of our colonial past, which oftentimes get in the way of the realisation of the vision for the Transport Authority and by extension, the sector. I have given it my best shot.

For every measure of success that I have experienced whilst leading the Authority, I owe it to the hard work and dedication of you the employees who oftentimes go above and beyond the call of duty to show your love and appreciation for my style of leadership, that’s where the tyre hits the road.

My fondest memories will be of those employees who grew, whether in your current position or as you transitioned to new openings and made us so proud. You are an awesome set of employees who deserve all the value, all the high praises and appreciation that I have shown on behalf of my Chairman and the rest of the Board. We made a great team and for this, I am extremely thankful.

In the words of Vusi Thembekwayo ” if you are not opening doors for others, you were never meant to be there in the first place, your responsibility and mine is to shine a light wherever you go” keep shining your light”.

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