Head of the Presidential Secretariat, Dr Roger Luncheon, has defended the involvement of the National Industrial and Commercial Investments Limited (NICIL) in the pursuit of a New Bridge across the Demerara River. He said that the project is not intended to be an exclusive Government undertaking.
Dr. Luncheon said that the Ministry of Public Works deals exclusively with Government business.
NICIL, he said, in its articles of association was created to pursue such partnerships.
A Partnership for National Unity (APNU) is vehemently against the pursuit of the New River Bridge using NICIL which is headed by Winston Brassington.
Dr. Luncheon said that it is in the articles of association and in the memorandum of NICIL to undertake on behalf of Government such an engagement. “This is a public/private engagement that we are pursuing.”
He said that Government will not be using public resources to build the bridge it will be a public private partnership.
Dr. Luncheon however, refused to divulge just how much money would be in the project from the ‘public’ aspect of the project saying that submissions have not been made as yet.
APNU’s Joseph Harmon, in a recent interview said that while his party is in support of the building of a new structure, it is wholly against any involvement of Winston Brassington and NICIL.
“Bharrat Jagdeo and Winston Brassington must not be allowed to hijack the process and be involved in the workings of the building of a new bridge across the Demerara River,” said Harmon.
The APNU Executive said that there is enough questionable information in the public domain regarding NICIL and as such, the sitting President should ensure that the company and Brassington no longer undertake these projects.
NICIL and Brassington have been at the forefront of several large projects mired in controversy such as the Amaila Falls Hydro Electric Project, the Berbice River Bridge and the Marriott Hotel.
Asked why NICIL would be the vehicle to pursue the project and not the Ministry of Public Works, is because of the involvement of former President, Bharrat Jagdeo, Harmon said. “We don’t want these people (Jagdeo and Brassington) involved.”
He suggested that the National Infrastructure Thematic Working Group should instead be tasked with pursuing the building of the New Demerara River Bridge. That body was formed when the National Stakeholders Forum recently met at the Guyana International Conference Centre. This group, Harmon said, comprises a number of local organizations,
inclusive of the private sector and the Work Services Group of the Public Works Ministry.
NICIL, headed by Brassington, this past weekend began the process of searching for partners to build the New Demerara River Bridge, using the debt and equity financing structure.
In the call for partners, NICIL said that the project will be implemented using a Build Own Operate Transfer (BOOT) model, “in a manner similar to the Berbice Bridge.”
According to Government, the responses received from the call for expressions of interest will be used to guide the selection of a partner or partners who will work with government to design and implement the project.
The project will see NICIL creating a special purpose company “financed by debt and equity contributions following a public/private partnership model.”
The call for expressions of interest states clearly that “The GoG (Government of Guyana) is not bound to accept any Expression of Interest.”
Jun 06, 2020By Sean Devers Regarded by many in the local Rugby fraternity, including National Captain Jamal Angus, as the best teenage Rugby talent in Guyana, fly-half Tyrese Prescod seems well poised to...
Jun 06, 2020
Jun 06, 2020
Jun 05, 2020
Jun 04, 2020
Jun 04, 2020
Editor’s Note, If your sent letter was not published and you felt its contents were valid and devoid of libel or personal attacks, please contact us by phone or email.
Feel free to send us your comments and/or criticisms.
Contact: 624-6456; 225-8452; 225-8458; 225-8463; 225-8465; 225-8473 or 225-8491.
Or by Email: [email protected] / [email protected]