Questions abound about Min­is­ters in Texas to meet Exxon

Weekend Mirror - - EDITORIAL -

Sev­eral govern­ment min­is­ters of the Govern­ment se­cretly left Guyana for Terxas, USA, to hold talks with ExxonMo­bil, t he Amer­i­can oil gi­ant posed to start pump oil out of Guyana in a few years.

When ex­posed by the me­dia, t he govern­ment quickly made a pub­lic state­ment but there is still questions be­ing asked about the na­ture of the visit and why so many min­is­ters are in­volved in such high level meet­ings.

Those on the trip are Min­is­ter of Nat­u­ral Re­sources, Raphael Trot­man; Min­is­ter of Fi­nance, Win­ston Jordan; Min­is­ter of Pub­lic In­fra­struc­ture, David Pat­ter­son and Min­is­ter of Busi­ness, Do­minic Gaskin.

One usu­ally re­li­able source has ex­pressed con­cern that the Min­is­ter left to go speak with Exxon of­fi­cials in Texas, but took no tech­ni­cal per­sons. The source said, “They are Min­is­ters they should not be the ones go­ing there to speak with Exxon’s peo­ple, they do not know what is go­ing on.”

The per­son con­tended that “even if Min­is­ters wanted to go, tech­ni­cal peo­ple are sup­posed to ac­com­pany them. This spells recipe for dis­as­ter.”

The trip was con­firmed by a very se­nior govern­ment of­fi­cial who said that the Min­is­ters are not in Texas to ne­go­ti­ate with ExxonMo­bil but to “fa­mil­iar­ize” them­selves with the oil and gas-re­lated mat­ters.

The facts about many ar­eas of Guyana’s de­vel­op­ing oil and gas in­dus­try are be­ing treated as state se­crets. The con­tract be­tween Guyana and ExxonMo­bil is un­der lock and key.

Fur­ther, even the names of those who have and are con­tin­u­ing to ne­go­ti­ate on Guyana’s be­half are be­ing kept a se­cret.

At a post- Cabi­net press brief­ing, Har­mon said that the govern­ment is not ready for the Guyanese peo­ple to know the names of the main pro­fes­sion­als ne­go­ti­at­ing with ExxonMo­bil.

He told the me­dia, “I can­not say specif­i­cally who else was there (at the ne­go­ti­at­ing ta­ble).

Those mat­ters are still un­der wraps, so I can­not give spe­cific names to you. But, what I can say is that the mat­ter was led by the com­pe­tent Min­is­ter of Nat­u­ral Re­sources, Raphael Trot­man, and the govern­ment has all con­fi­dence in that Min­is­ter to lead the sec­tor and to lead any ne­go­ti­a­tion in the best in­ter­est of the peo­ple of Guyana.”

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