(CMR) George R. Ebanks has resigned from the Consumer Council after “irreconcilable differences” with other council members. His resignation comes less than two months after he was appointed in late January.
OfReg confirmed it has accepted his resignation and that “these differences centre on his behaviour as Chair and on the role and remit of the Council as an advisory body to OfReg to identify and recommend solutions to issues facing consumers in the utilities sectors.”
Council Members independently reported to OfReg that Mr. Ebanks was acting unilaterally in speaking on behalf of the entire Council on matters on which they had not discussed or agreed upon.
This extended to a fundamental disagreement on the role and function of the Consumer Council. They also took serious issue with Mr. Ebanks’ aggressive and demeaning tone and behaviour in both written communications and in Council meetings.
OfReg Interim CEO, Mr. Peter Gough said:
“OfReg has accepted Mr. Ebanks resignation as Chair and Member of the Consumer Council. It is disappointing to find the Chair was not aligned with the role and remit of the Council and was in conflict with other Council members to the extent that the Council could no longer function under his leadership. However, we look forward to appointing a new Chair in due course so that the Council can get back to the work of helping OfReg represent and protect the rights of consumers in the utilities sectors.”
This is not the first time that Ebanks' behavior has been called into question. He was accused in 2020 of sexual harassment by a worker at a local restaurant where he acted as HR manager. In his response to CMR, he noted that she had not directly refused his advances.