Kaieteur News yesterday mentioned that the global financial crisis killed the Marriott deal. When I read that, my first question was what deal was being referred to.
I am not aware of any deal between the government of Guyana and the concerned investors.
There may have been a deal but this deal has not been made public. Until I see the contract then I will continue to ask, “What deal?”
We do not even know the identity of investors. The President of Guyana had promised that when the sod was turned that their names would have been revealed.
This was supposed to have happened since last July before the global financial crisis hit. But it did not and now we are told that the deal is dead. Again, I say, “Show me the deal!”
I would not trust the life of my dog in the hands of this government. If they had to make a deal to save the life of my dog, I would have to say to him, “You have been with me since you were a puppy but it now seems as if you have to go to that great kennel in the sky.”
What sort of deal did the government make to build the hotel? Does the PPP government know to properly make deals with foreign investors?
What sort of government would spend hundreds of millions of dollars to redo the sewage lines for a hotel? Why did the government have to be responsible for this work?
And why did they not simply give permission to the investors to build the new sewage lines as part of the investment, instead of having to spend hundreds of millions to relay sewage lines for a deal which we are now told is dead.
Let us not also forget that a local contracting company had begun the work but there was reservations expressed and then a foreign company was appointed to do the work, no doubt with the blessings of the investors. Is this how deals are made for investment?
Is it true that in excess of US$3M was spent to dig up the old and functioning sewage lines and replace them with sturdier pipes? Or it this also irrelevant?
Now that the deal is dead, I am wondering whether the government would reveal the names of the investors and the results of any due diligence they would have conducted on these investors.
After all, it is inconceivable that the government would have gone ahead and dig up the road near the proposed site so as to facilitate the laying of new sewage lines unless they were convinced about the bona fides of the investors.
I am hereby bringing this matter to the attention of the international community since it is the international financial institutions which have been plugging a lot of money, including the payment of super-salaries, into things such as the privatization process.
I am calling on these bankers, as they have done in other areas of the economy, to set certain conditions to further disbursement of funds for the privatization process.
I am calling on them to demand that as a condition for future funding, that all deals entered into by the State should be tabled in the National Assembly.
In the meantime, I am calling on the Auditor General to launch a special investigation into the relaying of the sewage lines. I hope he understands that he does not need to be invited by the government to investigate how proceeds of the State were spent.
I would also like the Auditor General to look into this matter of the huge pump and accessories and fittings that last year, we were told, was built at a cost of over eighty million dollars to drain the very areas from Belfield to Greenfield which is now under inches of water.
I am sure than when the specifications of the pump was being determined that consideration must have been given to the volume of water that it would have been required to drain and the fact that we are experiencing heavier than usual rainfall.
My question therefore is that if the government spent eighty million dollars on this pump, how come there is so much flooding?. And how effective has been the pump which cost so much money?
I also want an investigation by the government as to how come permission was granted for the dam in Victoria to be dug up and the earthen material sold. I have seen on explanation in the newspapers which suggests that the canal alongside the dam was being de-silted and the mud was to be put on the dam.
Thus to prevent the dam becoming too high, earthen material was dug up and sold.
I am not sure that it is wise for anyone to reduce the height of a dam in this way because recapping a dam is not a process of simply throwing silt on top of it.
I would however like to learn of the technical analysis that allowed for a decision to have been taken for earthen material to have been removed and sold from this dam, now resulting in headaches for residents.
I want a commission of inquiry into this matter.
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