Gov’t should buyout Berbice River Bridge – Jagdeo

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By Fareeza Haniff

Berbice Bridge
Berbice Bridge

[www.inewsguyana.com] – Leader of the opposition People’s Progressive Party (PPP), Bharrat Jagdeo is advocating for the APNU+AFC government to buyout the Berbice River Bridge from its shareholders if it is serious about reducing the tolls.

Jagdeo made the suggestion at a press conference held at Freedom House on Friday, September 25, where he revealed that the government has enough money to reach a settlement with the Bridge Company.

The toll reduction was slated to be reduced since September 01, but the BBCI has refused to do so amid claims that it runs the risk of becoming bankrupt.

The Company also chastised the government for arriving at such a decision, without first consulting with the Bridge officials and rushing to fulfill a promise which it made to the electorate during its election campaign.

The APNU+AFC administration has however set aside $36M as a subsidy for the BBCI this year. This too was rejected by the officials but according to Jagdeo, he recently met with members of the Berbice business community, who are urging the PPP to get involved in the negotiations.

Opposition Leader Bharrat Jagdeo
Opposition Leader Bharrat Jagdeo

Jagdeo used the opportunity to criticize the government for subsidizing the toll with $36M while “$60M was budgeted for the Prime Minister to fix up his house and to buy a vehicle.”

“So they had more room to do much more in relation to the Bridge; you still have about $30B in the semi autonomous agencies – the so called private accounts that the government can transfer anytime and should have transferred based on their election promise. There is still about $30B held out there that they can use, I think, if they want, to negotiate a settlement and take back the bridge,” Jagdeo told the news conference.

He reiterated that there is a lot of room for discussion.

“I think they need to sit down and talk and find a solution so they can fulfill their electoral promise and we’ll support anything that brings down the fare for the Berbice Bridge… any solution that they come up with in the Parliament that treats everyone fairly,” the Opposition Leader noted.

8 COMMENTS

  1. That boy is a real scamp! His buddies put up a few million dollars to help build the bridge, but now he wants the government to pay them between GY$450m and GY$600m to give up the bridge? That money cannot be divided up among his friends, but proportionately among the investors based on what they brought to the table. NIS will walk away with the lion’s share, but that will be like the government paying the hustlers and itself. Naaah! Let the bridge file for bankruptcy.

  2. No buying by the Gov’t……..These investors are nothing more than common criminals ! Buying the Bridge will effectively satisfy the intent of these scamps : making money on the backs of the tax payers and pensioners…….The ordinary lay man can see this, why can’t the Gov’t ?

  3. This Rat now changing his mouth. Why did he not show that concern when head of his government. Reasons_ his minority owner friends had not made their money back as yet.These people are devoid or incapable of any decency.

  4. I was saying that all along, why don’t the government sell the Marriott hotel and use some of the money the buy back the Berbice bridge. Immediately the toll can fall to $500, a win win for everyone.

  5. Nice try Jagdeo, campaigning on behalf of your buddies eh, now that the heat is on since the Government is exploring other options like the water taxi. Keep y’all bridge man along with the fancy tolls, we gonna try with de water taxi fu now.

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