…deal by PNC
A whole lotta eyebrows were raised when Granger sole-sourced Dr Mark Bynoe to head the Energy Department. Granger’s energy advisor complained that the post was supposed to be advertised. The man was an “Environment and Resource Economist” and had been in charge of Caricom’s Climate Change Centre!! It’s as if there weren’t other options – you had the eminently qualified Dr Vincent Adams with 3 decades’ experience with the US Department of Energy!! Ah…but he was from the AFC! He was fobbed off to the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA)!!
Bynoe, on the other hand, had been a protege of the Grangers – brought in by Mrs Granger who’d spent decades at Caricom. Granger needed someone who would do his bidding on the biggest thing to hit Guyana — oil — and so he declared Bynoe “fit and proper”! As to why, he didn’t say!! Bynoe himself used a sole-sourcing method to hire a consultant to produce the final Local Content Policy Draft – which was widely panned. But he also held a series of oil briefings for schoolchildren and members of various Christian denominations! It would appear that (with good reason!!) he was quite diffident on briefing individuals and groups, who could ask uncomfortable questions.
Anyhow, he’s back in the news. After announcing that Exxon would be taking the first three lifts of oil – 3 million barrels – to their refineries on the US Gulf Coast, it was revealed by the US news agency Bloomburg that Guyana had contacted oil traders to come to Guyana to negotiate spot contracts for the first oil that Guyana was going to receive, as its “in kind” bonus and “profit oil” share!! Now, there’s nothing wrong about selling our oil on the “spot market – where the oil is loaded into tankers and sold to traders.
One briefing paper calls this method “the quick and dirty way, where buyers and sellers of individual cargoes find each other and transact a deal, creating the spot market where prices for specific grades of crude are “discovered.” This is contrasted with “term sales”, which is when “A national oil company negotiates a contract with a buyer for a longer period, typically a year, and the agreement stipulates how the price will be determined against a specified spot benchmark.” In the world, term contracts are three times spot sales.
Bynoe gave some cock-and-bull about assaying “quality” as the reason for the spot sales – when there are professional billion-dollar companies like S&P Global Platts and Argus that do this routinely. The concern is Bynoe’s demand that traders come PERSONALLY to Guyana. This is unheard of, since these matters are handled electronically.
But, then, the traders won’t be able to see the “wink”!!
This coming Saturday is the anniversary of Charrandass Persaud’s “Yes! Yes! Yes!” to the Opposition’s No Confidence Motion. It threw the PNC coalition into a tailspin, from which they’ll never recover! Never mind their Sherman-like scorched earth manoeuvres; that simply delayed their day of Judgement!! At the time, with all eyes on him to explain Persaud’s action, Ramjattan attempted a Shaggy: “Wasn’t me!!”
He revealed that his fellow VP, Allicock, had given him a screenshot of Persaud enquiring to purchase gold from a miner. With great fanfare, Ramjattan passed this on to the Police as “evidence” that Persaud was guilty!! Now we know why he’s a CRIMINAL lawyer!! It’s criminal!! Over the weekend, Ramjattan still insisted that evidence of bribery exists. Why? “Persaud has spoken to people”! But why wasn’t PNC Exec Aubrey Norton hauled in by the Police for questioning?? Hadn’t he insisted he had evidence that Jagdeo “colluded with forces in Trinidad and mobilised resources to bribe a sitting member of Parliament (Persaud)?
And whatever happened to the gold lead??
The Integrity Commission had explained that they couldn’t publish the names of the defaulters who hadn’t filed their assets, because they didn’t have funds. Shown that funds had actually INCREASED, they explained that funds were spent “elsewhere” – like on salaries!!
Who watches the watchmen??