Kochi: Gigo Joseph, the Chief Executive Officer of SmartCity Kochi, the IT park project promoted by the Dubai based TECOM Investments here, has resigned. The Board of Directors having accepted his resignation, has for the time being, given the additional charge of CEO to Baju George, MD of SmartCity Kochi.
All along yesterday, the mainstream media and the social media were abuzz with the news of Gigo’s stepping down from the CEO’s position. Later in the day, Gigo came out with a statement that he had resigned due to personal reasons.
Prior to joining the SmartCity Kochi project in 2013, Gigo was the CEO of Infopark, Kochi. His appointment as the Infopark CEO had also attracted controversy, as he was appointed at the fag end of the LDF Government in 2011, apparently due to his political connections bypassing other selected candidates.
Ever since the SmartCity Kochi project was announced in 2006, it has been mired in controversy. The project has moved at snail’s pace after the first foundation stone was laid in 2008. Apart from the delay in inaugurating the first phase of the project, which has been put off time and again, his indifference towards a major education group who wanted to set up their facility in the SmartCity campus seems to have cost Gigo his job.
According to the Times of India, the UAE based education group had given a written complaint to TECOM stating that the CEO didn’t reciprocate their interest to build a large facility. The group alleged that they were advised to ‘approach Kerala government’s Infopark for cheap land’.
The report further adds that in a simultaneous development, a facility audit team of Tecom found structural flaws in the first phase construction of the project. Though this was rectified, Tecom was unhappy that the issue was not reported to its higher-ups.
In 2014, The Comptroller and Auditor General of India (CAG) had come down heavily on the Kerala Government regarding the SmartCity Kochi project and flayed the State Government for their lack of transparency in executing the project. The report had stated that the government had given undue favours to the SmartCity Kochi project at every stage.
Photograph shows a Malayalam newspaper report about the news
Read more about the flip-flops in the SmartCity Kochi saga.
Kerala IT News