May 03, 2021 Editorial
Kaieteur News – It would have been better if Guyana’s Oil and Gas Vice President, Bharrat Jagdeo, had maintained his now characteristic distance and silence on anything related to his aggressively pushed gas-to-shore project at Wales. The Vice President decided to chance his arm in the hope that he would get away with the usual fast one, with nobody knowing, except that he calculated wrong. Now that he opened his mouth two Mondays ago, a little bit more of his cherished gas-to-shore project is on the road in full public view. It is not a nice situation, with what Mr. Jagdeo is presenting to Guyanese taking on more and more the appearance of a bloated corpse, a decaying one.
To get a little closer to some truths and understanding about this prized gas-to-shore project, it is best to resort to the war of words that showers us from politicians suspected of not managing the huge and sacred responsibilities under their care with the greatest prudence, or the highest imperatives of pristine leadership principles. It makes for fascinating listening and hearing, and still more digesting and analysing, in what is laid before the Guyanese public. Clearly, somebody is miserly with truth and facts, and the totality of both. In other words, crucial elements are being cunningly withheld. We use the word ‘cunningly’ because it should remind our fellow citizens of the behaviour of foxes. They are dodgy and slippery, which can be stretched to the slimy and the tricky.
For there was Mr. Jagdeo telling us so many things about this newest expensive baby of his, the gas-to-shore project, except that he ensured that he clothed the child in bright colours, packaged it in still brighter wrapping paper, and then finished off his loving handiwork with the brightest ribbons that could be found. But no matter how much Mr. Jagdeo decorated that gas-to-shore baby of his, the real thing cannot be concealed. For sure, it has been slow in coming, but just as certainly, it has been happening, through revelation after revelation. They are all bad, and they now indicate that this highly prized baby of Mr. Jagdeo’s heart is one hell of a dummy, a monumental hoax that he is trying to stuff down the throats and craw of Guyanese.
For there was the shadow Oil and Gas man from the coalition, Mr. David Patterson, no gloriously shining knight in his own right, who tore away the fancy bells and whistles, and the bibs and booties, that Mr. Jagdeo hung on his baby, and exposed it for what it truly is, in its current state, and as presented by Mr. Jagdeo. It is that Mr. Jagdeo’s gas-to-shore baby is more than a dummy, it is a mummy. And now we have a better idea, as to why the nation’s chief oil and gas performer and lead singer was so hoarse first, and so mumbling and stumbling and bumbling over his lines. It is that, from all present indications, Mr. Jagdeo left out a whole lot of the story.
To use the words of Mr. Patterson, he “cherry picked”. Mr. Jadgeo gave the Guyanese people a gas-to-shore project that left out plenty of vital statistics. It is as if Mr. Jagdeo put up a beauty contestant and gave her a lot of lip gloss, eye shadow, conditioners, and foundation. But he made sure that his beauty contestant had, to use his own words, not “even a tiny brain.” Mr. Jagdeo thinks he is so slick that he left out many vital pieces of information about his touted gas-to-shore project.
Mr. Jagdeo, since he is a kind and compassionate leader, and not wishing to startle Guyanese, conveniently left out that Wales is not the best site. Mr. Jagdeo, since he didn’t want to overwhelm ordinary Guyanese, thoughtfully left out major pieces of information that are inseparable from the overall delivery and operation of the gas-to-shore project, like a power plant and transmission lines. And Mr. Jagdeo, since he did not desire to increase the anxiety levels of the people, smoothly left out those hundreds of millions more in American dollars that would be an essential aspect of any bona fide gas-to-shore project.
As we absorb all of this, we at this publication have this to say: this is not “cherry picking.” That is sticking it to Guyana’s hopeful population in the usual crafty and costly ways of leaders since National Independence. What Mr. Jagdeo delivered was window dressing and plenty of glittering fairy lights. But Guyanese are nobody’s fools, and know all too well that all that glitters is not gold. As we look at the numbers, compliments of Mr. Patterson, it seems that over US$400 million was held outside of the box, and close to Mr. Jagdeo’s caring heart, bless him. We bless him for thinking of us and sparing us the fright of another 50 percent more to his US$800 million presentation.
We have maintained the position that the Vice President is as smart as a whip. Now that same whip comes back to beat him savagely with a rain of strikes and stripes. Clearly, on this gas-to-shore project, Mr. Jagdeo is full of noxious gas. We thank God for the small mercy of seeing through his facades of pretense, distance, and silence.
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