Sep 02, 2016 News
“The President is becoming increasingly ceremonial. Imagine he says release the contracts,
we have nothing to hide, and nobody pays attention to him. Not even his own government.”
This dismissive declaration was made yesterday by Opposition Leader, Bharrat Jagdeo. He was at the time speaking at his party’s weekly press conference.
Continuing in the same vein, Jagdeo pointed out that it was Granger who had said that the Judicial Service Commission should determine the appointments of officials in the Supreme Court Registry. Jagdeo said that in a clear act of defiance of the President’s statement, Attorney General Basil Williams reportedly interfered in the appointment of Zanna Frank as the Deputy Registrar in the Deeds Registry.
After his demeaning remarks about Granger, the Opposition Leader then turned his attention the controversial well located in the Sanata Complex. His explanation of the privatization agreement between his government and Queens Atlantic Investment Inc. (QAII) was barely believable.
He said that even though the GWI well in the Sanata Complex was privatized, the well “still” continues to provide the 9,000 surrounding residents of the Ruimveldt area – including D’Aguiar Park, Alexander Village, Meadow Bank and West Ruimveldt – with water.
While the Opposition Leader made this statement, he failed completely to remind the nation that the well was, and still is, being fully maintained and operated by Guyana Water Incorporated (GWI) personnel. The maintenance and electrical bills cost GWI a whopping $3M monthly.
Jagdeo brazenly stated that, “One thing was clear throughout all of this…the 9,000 people who are benefitting from the water, they will continue to benefit from that. GWI didn’t have to pay Queens Atlantic for the water, the well, although located in the Sanata (complex), continued to serve West Ruimveldt and the 9,000 people.”
The Opposition Leader also revealed that there is a document showing the process taken to privatize the various assets.
“In that document it will show the process that we went through in privatizing everything, including the Sanata (Complex.)”
This document however was never made public in the past. In fact, the entire Sanata Complex deal was essentially a state secret.
The controversy surrounding this issue initially arose when GWI technicians attempted to conduct checks of a water connection attached to the buildings within the Sanata Complex.
The complex which is located in the Ruimveldt area was privatized some years ago under the Jagdeo administration. Jagdeo’s best friend, Dr. Ranjisinghi ‘Bobby’ Ramroop subsequently benefitted from a sweetheart deal on the complex.
During a “tit-for-tat” between the GWI technicians and Ramroop’s management, the technicians were subsequently asked to stand off and suspend all investigations until further notice.
Chairman of the GWI Board, Nigel Hinds later confirmed that ownership of the well was in question
and GWI needed to probe this.
GWI subsequently issued a statement on Wednesday confirming that the well is no longer under its control. According to a statement by the company, the investigations were to ascertain in whose name the well located in the compound of Sanata complex, was registered.
Following this disclosure, it was agreed between Ramroop and the utility company that “GWI will continue to service the well, which also supplies water to residents within its environs.”
GWI said that Dr. Ramroop indicated that he had bought the entire complex which included the well but “inherited the daily checks of the well by GWI. He assured GWI that he will not interfere with this arrangement.”
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