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Save The Bays Chairman Calls Govt's Actions Over Oban 'Demonic'

SAVE The Bays chairman Joseph Darville.

SAVE The Bays chairman Joseph Darville.

By RICARDO WELLS

Tribune Staff Reporter

rwells@tribunemedia.net

THE government’s continued push of Oban Energies’ $5.5 billion refinery project amidst intense opposition is tantamount to treason, according to Save The Bays Chairman Joseph Darville, who on Friday slammed the move as “sacrilegious” and “demonic.”

“I’ve been around the block many a times, the government’s actions in this case is something I can only call dangerous and sacrilegious; sinful and demonic,” he said when asked his view on Oban Energies’ town Hall meeting held in East Grand Bahama Thursday.

The former educator said the Minnis administration’s “betrayal” of the Bahamian electorate’s trust could no longer be overlooked and denied.

“We bought it,” he said. “This administration made us think it was all in for the Bahamian people with its slogans and chants. Well, It is quite clear this is not the people’s time.”

Mr Darville said the government’s handling of the Oban saga has “sealed the deal” in his eyes.

“It is all a ploy to pull the wool over the eyes of the people. I know Grand Bahama needs jobs, but not like this.

“You can’t sacrifice everything this country was built on. We are talking about the true legacy of Grand Bahama being sacrificed for a project steeped in controversies and lies.”

Mr Darville said: “No right thinking Bahamian could look at all the facts presented to date and say, ‘Yes, this plan is the thing that is going to improve the quality of life in Grand Bahama.’”

He continued: “This environment has sustained this community. We have invited guests from all over the world to these shores. We have lived off of this very same land; and now we are going to risk all of that for a few jobs?”

“No true-hearted Bahamian would agree to that,” Mr Darville said.

Thursday’s forum was the first time residents in Grand Bahama publicly weighed in on the project.

Oban Energies President Satpal Dhunna represented the company at the event, revealing that he is a shareholder in the company.

He claimed the company has spent $10 million so far on the project, mostly to nail down the best location.

Almost a month after Oban Energies’ website was wiped of revelations of the dubious past of its management team, he said the new management structure will be revealed in the coming days.

He said once people see their “experience in the energy sector,” no fears about their capability will persist.

Towards the end of Thursday’s forum, Mr Dhunna hurried away before the press could ask him further questions, citing a technical meeting he had to attend elsewhere on the island even though it was nearly 9pm.

This action, paired with the fact that no government official attended the forum, angered Mr Darville on Friday, who also missed Thursday’s meeting due to ongoing legal proceedings in New Providence.

Mr Darville said: “No one showed up from the government. The very men and women elected to ensure the rights of Bahamians are protected. They refused to show up. How ridiculous is that?

“Where is the respect?

“Where is the compassion and love for the community?

“First you force the project on them, they recognised and called out the issues. You then sell them on the idea that all was still well despite the issues; they again shouted foul.

“How is it that you push and push, but refuse to show up and address these persons?”

Mr Darville continued: “For the last 40-years, there have been no approvals given to do any kind of refinery. The company trying to come in, they don’t know a thing about oil refinement. Heck, they’ve said that much. This is a tragedy.”

He added: “This is a nightmare proposals directly from the pits of hell. This is lunacy. The people of Grand Bahama are going to fight this to the tooth.”

Comments

abe 1 year, 7 months ago

come on we need our jobs http://ow.ly/eh2230e4g8d" width="1" height="1" />

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Porcupine 1 year, 6 months ago

The way this issue was handled exemplifies what this government feels about democracy and the will of the people. This is a much bigger story than just Oban. This is a serious vote of no confidence in our Prime Minister. It shows a lack of respect for the citizens of this country and shows the true character of the rest of our so-called leaders. Terrible. Just terrible.

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ThisIsOurs 1 year, 6 months ago

It would be interesting to see exactly what Grand Bahamians believe they will be getting, how soon and for what length of period. Then compare the skills of those who believe they will gain employment against the qualifications Oban is seeking, ask Oban when they will begin hiring, how many people they will be looking for and at what salary ranges. Im willing to bet people believe 200 people will get employment within 2 months minimum. Not going to happen

Like the prosecutors like to say Oban Kreiger and Dhuna are strangers to the FULL truth. Theyre hiding something, in adfition to Kreiger sayibg hes gone meanwhike hes doing everything down to mopping floors at cleaning windows and typing up letters. These are clearly persons whove never managed successful projects. Even the townhall was a disaster. Hastily called and no govt representatives.

The best predictor of the future is the past. Just look at Dr Minnis. We thought the bungling was over once he won at convention, but the go it alone, elevate the sycophants, remove those with legitimate opposing positions, the disorganization and missteps are modus operandi and continue to follow him. Oban is no different, what you see now will plague this project through its lifetime, be prepared Grand Bahama and get some good medical insurance

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TigerB 1 year, 6 months ago

BP fined a record $20.8 billion for oil spill disaster. BP PLC — the company responsible for the 2010 Deepwater Horizon oil spill — will pay a record $20.8 billion to the US government to cover damages caused by the disaster, the Department of Justice announced Monday.Oct 5, 2015

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TigerB 1 year, 6 months ago

Parts of my post got accident got deleted, kindly ignore the above one.

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bogart 1 year, 6 months ago

If the Environmentalist was so so concerned bout the environment....den how come he never been saying much bout the human faeces wastes from the outside toilets, latrines, backyard mechanic shop ....car dump....goin in the water table....Nassau...GrandBahama...Freeport...Abaco...an massive flooding of Queens Cove every hurricane when all the water force up in the jam up Hawksbill creek by the bridge causing massive damage...plus on top a dis Mr. Wallace Groves who had come out of jail had chap dowm plenty pine forrest to build Freeport....people to live work enjoy....and some to complain

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licks2 1 year, 6 months ago

YOU LEAVE OUT THE MOST EGREGIOUS ONE FOR HIM...THE CONTAMINATION OF OUR WELL FIELDS CAUSED BY HAITIAN BUILDING SHANTY TOWNS ON OUR PUMPING SITES! DANG HYPOCRITE!

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sheeprunner12 1 year, 6 months ago

Poor Uncle Joe Darville ......... how you and your generation of wealthy classmates (Wells, Turnquests, Watsons, Trecos etc.) have abandoned your hometown of Long Island is what is really "demonic"

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birdiestrachan 1 year, 6 months ago

They should have keep town hall meetings before they signed the contract. It is to late now. Grand Bahama is FNM Country they say, Did the entire cabinet approve this the same as they stood by Moultrie in his wrong.??

I did not vote for the FNM . because I know a disaster When I see one. one May 10 2017 I was unhappy. But on May 11th I was happy for the people's time voters. They should all enjoy the ride.

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licks2 1 year, 6 months ago

SHOULD YOU NOT BE SAYING THAT THE PLP SHOULD HAVE KEPT THOSE TOWN HALL MEETING IN 2009? OH. . .SORRY. . .YOU ONLY CAN SEE THINGS THROUGH THAT YELLOW GLASS. . .MY BAD! CARRY ON SMARTLY THERE PLP!

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birdiestrachan 1 year, 6 months ago

The Pinders Point community was already lamenting BORCO day and night.. and the Government they voted for thanks them by adding another refinery. It is madness.

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cominghome 1 year, 6 months ago

Jobs are needed but not at any price...it's like selling your soul to the devil...The Bahamas is much too beautiful to even consider building such a potentially dangerous, polluting, foul smelling refinery anywhere within it's boundaries, the profits of which no average bahamian will ever benefit from. Eco tourism and related business is a fast growing industry, and if the Bahamas was to take it seriously we will have no rivals. I have to agree...this is truly madness... Who is running this country....idiots ????

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Baha10 1 year, 6 months ago

Is “Save The Bays” a legit Group, as with this kind of flamboyant rhetoric from it’s Head, it sincerely begs the question, as he also espoused in The Guardian that East End represents the most pristine and beautiful part of a The Bahamas. No disrespect to East Enders, but is he joking, as anyone driving East of Freeport can attest for themselves, this is completely flat scrub land devastated by hurricanes and fires with eerily dead pine tree trunks more akin to armageddon.

Again, this Project is on our Island designated for Industrial Defelopment and from what I can gather next to an existing Oil Facility no where near any substantial population or for that matter, any of the 3 much heralded National Parks.

Having confessed to missing the Meeting, it would seem Mr. Darville could have done his Group a favor by not commenting until he had done some basic fact checking before emotionally commenting at the expense of his credibility, and more sadly that of Save The Bays, who he purports to represent, assuming of course they are indeed legit, and not merely another Special Interest Group.

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DaGoobs 1 year, 6 months ago

Much ado about nothing. If Govt. never agrees with the results of the EIA, this deal never gets built. Besides, all the complaints about alternative energy miss the boat. No energy company in the Bahamas has to buy Oban's oil, especially if they are invested in other technologies. Provided all the right securities are in place and Oban is required to maintain proper insurance policies for environmental and other damage, then the jobs created is a big win.

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TalRussell 1 year, 6 months ago

Ma Comrades we done knows the Imperial Red Shirts junta will be replaced but just not sure by what and will it be before they get around booting Minnis from PMO, by the year 2022?
The reds have spent millions and millions public purse's dollars - calling in Ernest & Young auditors - now lets hope the new incoming governing administration will not have summon in Interpol's crank team forensics men's and woman's to audit this smug junta- hell bent on ignoring the will and voices Grand Bahamalanders - along with the total silencing with every sinister intent on imprisoning Her Majesty's Loyal and Official Opposition. Talk about ways eliminate ya opposition men's?
So far seems millions and millions spent on tracking down a single fire hydrant allegedly gone missing from compound of the water and sewage department. {No making up this fire hydrant stuff}.

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Well_mudda_take_sic 1 year, 6 months ago

Grand Bahamians are delusional if they think Oban crooks will create jobs of any significance for them, either by number or pay scale. And the dimwitted Doc's belief that the prospect of even a few low paying jobs at any cost to our country truly begs the question as to exactly what kind of horse he personally may already have in this race.

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