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…Jan Mangal knocks her appointment as ‘foolish’
The Canadian official, Alison Redford hired by the PPP/C to review the Payara Development plan was caught up in a corruption scandal in her own country back in 2014 and former Petroleum Adviser to the David Granger administration said that the woman has no expertise in the field she has been asked to review.
“What a joke Guyanese. Is the PPP trying to compete with the Coalition for stupidness? This is clearly not Ms Redford’s expertise. Nor can one person do anything. This is a very sad joke, at the expense of Guyana. Did the PPP not look at Ms Redford’s resume? Do the Canadians take Guyanese for fools?”
Mangal also queried how many FDP’s has Ms Redford reviewed or overseen, for Deepwater developments similar to Payara? “My assumption is ZERO. Guyanese, you cannot allow this blatant mismanagement of your oil wealth. Guyanese, you need to object to this nonsense. And I thought the PPP leadership were supposed to be brighter and more competent. This is so disheartening. There is no hope for us. Complete fools.”
Alison Redford and her office used taxpayer money “inappropriately” during her time as Alberta premier, with planes used for personal and partisan purposes, provincial Auditor General Merwan Saher had found in a report.
“They consistently failed to demonstrate in the documents we examined that their travel expenses were necessary and a reasonable and appropriate use of public resources,” Saher had written in the report according to a new item on the Canadian Broadcasting Corporation back in August 7, 2014.
“Premier Redford used public assets (aircraft) for personal and partisan purposes. And Premier Redford was involved in a plan to convert public space in a public building into personal living space. “How could this have happened? The answer is the aura of power around Premier Redford and her office and the perception that the influence of the office should not be questioned.”
Then Alberta Justice Minister Jonathan Denis had said that the report was forwarded to the RCMP for review. “I have instructed Tim Grant, deputy minister, justice and solicitor general, to forward the report and its attachments to the RCMP,” Denis said in the news release. “Any investigation that the RCMP does will be fully independent of my office and, as such, I will have no further comment on the matter.
“Should the RCMP require legal advice on its investigation, I have arranged for prosecutors with the Ontario attorney general’s office to exclusively work on this matter. This will further ensure a fully independent investigation and remove any perception of conflict of interest.”
Redford resigned as premier in March of 2014 over questions about her spending, use of government planes and leadership style. She stepped down as MLA for Calgary-Elbow on Wednesday, one day before the release of Saher’s report. In the hard-hitting report, Saher had found there was a tendency for the government “to work around or ignore rules” to fulfil requests from Redford’s office.
It was done in a way “that avoided leaving the premier with personal responsibility for decisions,” the report states. “Other areas of government were wary of challenging decisions made in the premier’s office.” Saher found eight examples where Redford used a government plane to travel to PC Party events. In three of those instances, there was no government business scheduled.
The report also examined trips Redford made to Vancouver in March 2013 and Jasper in June 2013. “We concluded that there was a greater personal time component to these trips than a government business component,” the report states. The government plane was booked for Redford to attend her uncle’s funeral in Vancouver.
On Friday Vice President, Bharrat Jagdeo told a news conference that the Payara development, ExxonMobil’s third development project offshore Guyana, is on hold as the new government awaits a review of the Payara Field Development Plan (FDP) before granting its approval. Jagdeo, disclosed that the Government has hired the Canadian consultant to review the development plan, and it is expected to be completed by August 24, 2020. “We have made it clear that consistent with what we have said before, we want to move the production along, but we also want to be sure that the country benefits from this,” the Vice President told media operatives at the Arthur Chung Conference Centre (ACCC).
He noted that it was President Irfaan Ali who decided to have a review of the Payara FDP done and “that technical review will guide the decision of the PPP/C Government”.
Dr. Jagdeo maintained that the review is not intended to delay Payara’s field development, but rather to ensure the country’s resource is protected. “We want to ensure that there is a proper technical evaluation because that is a technical issue about field developments, and we need the consultants to look at these issues.”
President Ali last week had disclosed that a meeting with various stakeholders was held where they were informed of the Government’s review. “So, we are in the process of engaging an international expert to do that review of the work done so far,” the Head of State had told the media on Tuesday.
The Vice President also confirmed that the Canadian Government aided in procuring technical assistance on the issue. The US oil giant had submitted the Payara FDP in September 2019, and has been awaiting approval since December 2019, after the former APNU+AFC Coalition Administration would have reviewed it. The Payara project is expected to produce up to 750,000 barrels of oil per day once it gets on stream.