Nov 17, 2023 Editorial
Kaieteur News – Guyana’s former Ambassador to South Africa, Dr. C. Kenrick Hunte has described what ExxonMobil has done with Liza I and 2 expenses as “utter contempt for Guyana.” Our position is worth repeating: ExxonMobil is not a partner of Guyana; it is a slave master ruling over dominion subjects. Slave masters have more than “utter contempt” for the people over whom they stand, they dehumanize them and block them in every way that they can conceive.
Study some of the things that ExxonMobil charged Guyana for, as exposed by the Ramdihal & Haynes audit. It is more than shocking, it is a revelation of people who think and act along sordid lines, who are callous in their recklessness. ExxonMobil is dangerous to the full potential of the people of this oil-rich country. For every dollar that should come to Guyanese, ExxonMobil schemes for a way to snatch 90 or more cents from it. The cost recovery audit revealed that, with anything and everything that could be billed to Guyana, being so. ExxonMobil not only did so due to its “utter contempt for Guyana”, but it also did so because it is confident that they could get away with such excesses. The thinking in the company’s Guyana office penthouses is that even if some strands of expenses were to be detected (and only some strands were), there was much more that went unexamined, and with more likely to be celebrated with ongoing and pending projects.
With 75 percent of Guyana’s oil revenues up for grabs under the title of expenses, it is an open invitation to ExxonMobil to help itself because the territory for exploitation is so rich. A company as seasoned and tricky in the oil business as ExxonMobil could and would find any array of camouflages under which to present expenses that, in ordinary circumstances, would be greeted with a firm kick out the door. Guyana’s circumstances are not ordinary, but customized for a hundred years plus operator like ExxonMobil to gut this country in any way that enriches the company’s coffers.
Look at what Guyanese live with when they have a mouthwatering bonanza. Their political leadership is weak, compliant as putty – simply observe the PPP/C Government’s timid stewardship of this oil wealth. Their institutions have been castrated, and now serve as little more than pawns and rubberstamps for ExxonMobil – Guyana’s Environmental Protection Agency is the biggest billboard displaying such placidness. Their leading oilman, Bharat Jagdeo, speaks a new tongue today – the language of investors and their visions, their concerns, their rights. Guyana’s professional class is on leave, and for the most part civil society is either afraid, or compromised, or indifferent.
This is the perfect situation for a powerful corporate predator such as ExxonMobil. It is why the company manifests such “utter contempt for Guyana” which means the Guyanese people, including the locals in high places who fawn over them, and roll on their bellies for them. When there are these types of locals lacking in backbone and self-respect, then ExxonMobil has the freedom to charge ahead as contemptuously as it could. As the audit revealed, ExxonMobil did so with some of the unbelievable items that it charged Guyana for, and to the tune of US$100 million. It is likely several more times this not insignificant amount, but that is a drawback of sampling which is a standard feature of audits. That is, for every game and dance move that ExxonMobil’s people enjoyed on Guyana’s oil dollar, there are possibly huge handfuls more that slipped through. This familiar saying has much application in the case of ExxonMobil, viz., where there is smoke, there is fire, which means more smoke.
By any measurement, from its own audit output, ExxonMobil has used its greater muscle (unpresented documents) great accounting cunning (cumbersome systems), and great skillfulness with scope management (a wall of resistance) to diminish the audit. In aggregate, “utter contempt for Guyana” has become the norm. Dr. Hunte spoke of counting oil barrels, he should read ExxonMobil’s contempt for Guyana in that area, from its reaction to the auditor’s request for diagrams to confirm the company’s production numbers. It is beyond contempt; it is ExxonMobil slapping Guyana with its open hand.
Pres. Ali putting water meters on the citizens in Berbice, and not meters on Exxon oil pumps.
Dec 03, 2023Kaieteur Sports – Recently, the Cricket West Indies (CWI) High Performance Unit (HP) and the Guyana Cricket Board (GCB)/Harpy Eagles Franchise (GHE) held an historic meeting when the CWI HP...
Dec 03, 2023
Dec 03, 2023
Dec 03, 2023
Dec 03, 2023
Dec 03, 2023
By Sir Ronald Sanders (The writer is Antigua and Barbuda’s Ambassador to the United States and the Organization of American... more
Freedom of speech is our core value at Kaieteur News. If the letter/e-mail you sent was not published, and you believe that its contents were not libellous, let us know, please contact us by phone or email.