Guyana has already begun oil production, even without critical pieces of legislation being put in place. One such piece of legislation is the Local Content Policy – which would guarantee the locals a fair fight for services in the oil and gas sector.
According to the Leader of the Opposition and General Secretary of the People’s Progressive Party/Civic (PPP/C), Bharrat Jagdeo, under a PPP/C Government, those critical pieces of legislation would be given prominence. He was at the time addressing a large gathering of supporters at Dino Square, Bartica, Region Seven (Cuyuni-Mazaruni).
“Exxon came here under the PPP. They were exploring for oil under the PPP. They found oil before the last elections (2015) and these people came into office with a gift there. All they had to do was to protect our interests and they failed absolutely,” he said.
“The oil belongs to the people of Guyana, all 800,000 of us and it must benefit our people. The young people must have jobs, our people must get more business. There must be a strong Local Content Policy to force the oil companies to send business our way,” Jagdeo added.
He noted that Guyanese businesses have no protection under the A Partnership for National Unity/Alliance For Change (APNU/AFC) Government. Under a PPP/C Government, Jagdeo noted that every Guyanese would see their wealth and prosperity grow because of the oil resources.
“We have to spend the money wisely. We have to ensure that the money is not stolen. That is why we said we will criminalise non-disclosures. Any minister, even under the PPP, who does not reveal the sums of money we receive under the oil companies, that person can go to jail for 10 years. We will pass laws to do that so we can avoid what happened,” Jagdeo said.
Jagdeo – a former Finance Minister himself— also took a jab at the current Finance Minister, Winston Jordan, who claimed that the Government thought the US$18 million signing bonus was a gift from ExxonMobil. He accused the Government of being incompetent when it comes to managing the natural resources of the country.
The seasoned politician told supporters that they are grateful for the level of support the campaign has received as they continue to present their plans to take Guyana forward. He noted that everywhere the Party has been, there have been complaints of doom under the current administration.