…denies opposing renegotiation of ExxonMobil
Former Foreign Affairs Minister, Carl Greenidge, is threatening a US$1M lawsuit against Jan Mangal, an advisor who worked with the Ministry of the Presidency on the oil and gas sector.
Among other things, Greenidge, through his lawyer Devindra Kissoon of London House Chambers, denied that he resisted the public release of the ExxonMobil contract and renegotiation of the agreement.
The Coalition Government is facing flak over the agreement which gave Guyana a two percent royalty and a 50/50 split in profits but has deeply worrying weaknesses which exposes the country.
The oil find, with more discoveries being made, is said to be one of the largest in the world with the quality being one of the best.
However, critics and other experts have blasted the agreement, which pointed to an unprepared Guyana holding the short end of the stick as compared to other countries.
The Government and the Opposition appeared not too keen to renegotiate the agreement, which was signed in 2016.
The “cease and desist” letter yesterday to Mangal, whose contract was not renewed by the Government, came days before the country heads to its toughest elections yet, scheduled for Monday.
According to the correspondence, which was copied to both Kaieteur News and Stabroek News, Mangal in recent statements have libeled Greenidge in the daily newspapers, including Kaieteur News.
“Simply put, you have accused Mr. Greenidge, a selfless civil servant, in the strongest terms as being corrupt, clandestine, “being supported by [his] friends in the private sector who get the [sic] construction contracts” and shockingly, “collud[ing] with companies to defraud the country.”
Greenidge claimed that the former Presidential Advisor libeled him by using the false premise that he was part of a core trio of senior Government representatives who were collectively responsible for the Government’s decision not to release the Exxon contract.
Greenidge said that this is an allegation, which is not only untrue, but fundamentally offensive and defamatory.
“Your statements have impacted Mr. Greenidge personally and professionally by damaging
his credibility, causing much distress and damage.
“Even more egregious is the fact that you did not make any attempt whatsoever to contact Mr. Greenidge concerning these articles before publication, despite there being ample evidence to refute the contents thereof.”
Greenidge is demanding that there be an immediate retraction of the articles and for an apology to be issued, failing which he will pursue a lawsuit of not less than US$1M.
Greenidge is a former Second Vice President and Minister of Foreign Affairs, and now the country’s Foreign Secretary.
In the letter to Mangal, he said he was never accused of a crime or being corrupt.
“By virtue of his Cabinet position, while Mr. Greenidge has been privy to privileged high
level discussions concerning Guyana’s oil sector, at no time has Mr. Greenidge had the
responsibility directly or indirectly for the Government of Guyana’s decisions concerning its
business relations with external companies, such as ExxonMobil, that being the sole responsibility of the Minister and Ministry of Natural Resources, as well as the President.”
In fact, he said that while being outspoken about the non-disclosure of Exxon’s signing bonus so as to give Guyana a legal advantage at the International Court of Justice, regarding the border claims by Venezuela, he is not responsible for the Government’s decision not to release the Exxon contract, an entirely separate matter.
The letter pointed to publications in Kaieteur News and Stabroek News in January and February 2020, based on statements by Mangal, which have hurt Greenidge.
Greenidge also claimed that that Mangal, whose address is in Houston, Texas, resorted to using Facebook posts, which projected him to be unprofessional and inept and causing taxpayers’ loss and damage.
In a Facebook post, Mangal allegedly had this to say about Greenidge, the former Foreign Minister: “He was completely against getting a fair deal for Guyana by renegotiating the 2016 contract…I viewed Greenidge as one of the biggest hurdles to a successful oil and gas industry & to a successful Guyana…Is he so defensive of Exxon because he was the one who negotiated the awful 2016 contract?”
The law firm demanded that Mangal immediately cease and desist from further defaming its client. It said that if Mangal failed to do so, an immediate legal action will be pursued.
“This letter is sent subject to our client’s reservation of all rights and for purposes of settlement only. We look forward to an immediate response complying with our demands, failing which we will have no choice but to take all necessary action.”
Apr 06, 2020By Zaheer Mohamed Port Kaituma Football Foundation (PKFF) is one of the leading sports organisations in Region One. The body was formed in 2009 with the aim of developing sports in the area. Its...
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]