FORMER Free National Movement Chairman Darron Cash yesterday questioned the specifics surrounding the government’s selection of an American company to take over the management of the Bahamas Electricity Corporation.
Mr Cash said whatever the merits of the new BEC structure will be, it is a “disgraceful act of betrayal” to outsource the management of BEC to a foreign company.
“On the face of it, this decision to bring in a foreign management team for BEC is an insult to every talented young Bahamian who has a passion to play a meaningful role in shaping the future of this country,” he added.
“Once again the message is sent that Bahamians are just not good enough. Once again the message is ‘bring in the foreign reserves’ when it comes to Bahamians summoning the will, skill and creativity to solve our national problems.”
He noted that while in opposition, Prime Minister Perry Christie “exploited” the Ingraham administration’s sale of BTC to Cable and Wireless for “shameful political advantage.”
“Now that he is in charge, he has declared that he has no confidence in Bahamians to run BEC,” Mr Cash said.
In a statement released yesterday, he also questioned the financial arrangement for the BEC deal. He added: “More than a year after the deal was scheduled to be concluded there was no communication to Parliament. No comprehensive programme or set of vision documents released. No strategic plan. No business plan. There was simply an impersonal in your face ‘are you happy now’ press release. Sadly, this is a typical reactionary step from a dithering prime minister who only moves when his back is firmly against the wall.”
Last Thursday, it was announced that American company PowerSecure International was selected as the new management company for BEC. In a statement, the government revealed that PowerSecure received a five-year contract to oversee generation and transmission/distribution.
The process is expected to lower electricity costs, increase energy security and reliability, and increase competitiveness as a country.
The news came after residents in New Providence experienced several days of rolling blackouts after engine failures at BEC’s plants.