Moderator / Ward 4 Businesses

SCAPEGOATED DC EMPLOYEE RETAINS LAW FIRM AMID PLANNED BID CONTRACT INVESTIGATION BY COUNCILWOMAN MARY CHEH

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE

Former DGS Associate Director Yinka Alao Hires The Chambers Firm To Fight Wrongful Termination Concocted To Appease Major Donor To DC Mayor Muriel Bowser

Washington, DC, September 2, 2016 – The recently fired DC Department of General Services (DGS) Associate Director for Contracting and Procurement has hired The Chambers Firm amid a planned investigation by Councilwoman Mary Cheh into possible corruption by District government officials.  Yinka T. Alao, a 10-year DC employee who previously led the “Procurement Integrity and Compliance Office” for the city’s Office of Contracting and Procurement, was abruptly placed on administrative leave on the 15th of August and separated from the government earlier this week after he approved the bid of Gilbane Building Co. (Gilbane), one of the nation’s biggest construction firms, to redevelop the St. Elizabeth’s East Campus – the future site of the Washington Wizards Basketball practice facility.

Gilbane’s approved bid was roughly $6 million and about $10 million less than the bid submitted by a major longtime donor to D.C. Mayor Muriel Browser, Fort Meyer Construction (FMC).  FMC’s bid was not chosen.   Despite the fact that Mr. Alao’s decision saved 10 million taxpayer dollars, he was summarily terminated after FMC apparently complained to Mayor Bowser’s administration.

Darrell Chambers, principal attorney at The Chambers Firm, indicated this is the kind of case that matters to all District employees and the residents of DC.  He further stated:

Mr. Alao is and has been a dedicated public servant in the District government for the last ten years. It is outrageous that the Mayor and City Administrator’s offices may have chosen to sacrifice him to appease a campaign contributor that lost out on city contracts, one of which would have cost District residents $10 million additional dollars over the winner’s bid. I commend the former DGS Director, Rear Admiral Christopher Weaver (Ret. USN), in taking a principled stance by not following the City Administrator’s direction to fire Mr. Alao in contravention of DC law.  What I find particularly perplexing is if, in fact, the DGS contracting function was underperforming, why transfer a specialized transportation procurement from DDOT to DGS for handling? Clearly government officials were confident that DGS could handle the contract even though it was outside their typical scope of responsibilities.

Obviously the statements made by District government officials in the media, painting Mr. Alao and his colleagues as rogue employees, incompetent in the performance of their duties, are false and we believe there is documentary proof that he secured legal sufficiency and followed best practices and his chain of command in making decisions that relate to this contract. While these statements will eventually be disproved they have nonetheless already caused, and will continue to cause, mental stress to Mr. Alao and his family along with damage to Mr. Alao’s future employment prospects until such time as this matter is cleared.

D.C. Council member Mary Cheh has vowed to hold a hearing to investigate the shakeup at DGS.

The Chambers Firm has offices in DC and Silver Spring, Maryland.  The principal of the firm, Darrell Chambers has over 18 years of litigation experience.  He is a former Section Chief in the Civil Litigation Division of the DC Attorney General’s Office.

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If you would like more information about this topic, please contact Darrell Chambers, Esq. at (202) 507-6273 or email at darrell@chambersfirmdcmd.com.

 

 

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