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Guyana finds itself in the worst strategy ever, collecting royalties from oil and gas and doesn’t know how much is paid per barrel, is the view shared by Mr. Glenn Lall, Publisher, Kaieteur News (KN).
Taking to his social media (TikTok) Friday, Lall waded into the Government for not knowing how much Guyana is being paid in royalty per barrel, content to be collecting money every quarter, apparently without asking questions of the oil giant, ExxonMobil.
Exxon is seeking to do an audit of the number of barrels pumped, the cost of the barrels, and the two per cent (2 %) royalty due to Guyana on each barrel over the last three years. A fierce critic of the existing oil and gas contract, and renegotiation advocate, Lall said were it not for a recent advertisement by the company, in his newspapers, for an auditing company to determine that Guyanese would have been none the wiser.
Last year Guyana reportedly received US$150 million in royalty.
Using an analogy to make the point, Lall questioned, “who collects their monthly pay cheque and doesn’t know what they’re supposed to get; if they were paid for overtime or if the boss took out the tax and the NIS? Further, he asked, if anybody knows anyone who does that, and stated this is how Vice President Bharrat Jagdeo, who oversees the oil and gas sector, has been collecting the 2 % royalty every quarter.
Drawing attention to the gravity of the situation the publisher questioned “which donkey, which fool, which idiot you know in this world would run a business that way?”
Stating, although there are persons in the government and private sector that considered themselves “world class financial experts” they have failed to ensure Guyana was in possession of the information on the royalty price per barrel since 2019.
Lall criticised the “jumbie politicians” and said the situation is tantamount to “a comic book.”
To this end, the KN publisher suggested “billboards with this madness” should be going up all across Guyana to bring awareness to what he described as slack and irresponsible behaviour by the Government.
Pivoting to Exxon, who he derided, the publisher said the Production Sharing Agreement (PSA) is even worse, and pointed out that “every oil export in this world” has been consistently warning Guyana to get hold of the formula, the method used by Exxon, in “calculating our profits [but] to this day … Jagdeo has not made that public for us to see.”
Lall considered the entire situation “horrible crimes” against the nation.