Why is GPL silent on the blackouts in the Upper Corentyne?

Dear Editor,

There is a deafening silence from GPL, its Chief Executive Officer, Mr Bharat Dindiyal, and its Berbice Manager, Mr Ayube Bacchus regarding the woefully unreliable supply of electricity in Berbice.

Let me, therefore, remind GPL, that as the only provider of electricity to Berbice, it bears a corporate and social responsibility to the people of this area to provide, at minimum, service that is adequate and reliable.

Let me also remind GPL’s senior management that they work for the people of Guyana, they are paid by taxpayers, and as such, they cannot hide behind a veil of silence regarding this situation.

It is a fact that the Berbice area, especially the Upper Corentyne, has been suffering from an unreliable supply of electricity for months now. This past week has seen multiple blackouts. Today (Monday), we have already had blackout two times. And what is GPL’s response? Silence.

This silence tells the residents of the Upper Corentyne a lot. It tells us that GPL does not care about us. It tells us that GPL does not respect us. It also tells us that GPL does not recognize that for the majority of residents of this area, there is no alternative electricity supply when there is a blackout.

Editor, I know these are harsh criticisms, but I stand by them, and challenge GPL’s senior management to prove me wrong. I also challenge Mr Ayube Bacchus to visit the Upper Corentyne, and to stay at one of the hotels in Skeldon so that he understands how this entire area suffers whenever there is a blackout. Surely, if he visits and sees the suffering of this area, he might have compassion and finally take the necessary steps to ensure that this area is rid of this plague, this calamity, this national disaster known as the GPL blackout.

I echo other writers in asking what must be done before GPL fixes the many issues that plague its operations. Do we need to protest, and block bridges, like our brothers and sisters elsewhere?

I also wonder what this government, which heavily subsidizes GPL, is doing to ensure that residents of the Upper Corentyne enjoy a better supply of electricity. Could Mr Romel Roopnarine, who loves to harp on about the developments in Berbice by the PPP government explain to us why, after twenty years in government, this PPP government still has been unable to provide a reliable supply of power to Berbice? Could Mr Armogan, the Region Six Chairman, provide some explanation of what he is doing (besides becoming angry), to take some steps to alleviate the sufferings of this area’s residents?

Surely there is someone who cares about the sufferings of the residents of the Upper Corentyne. Or are we the forgotten people now?
Yours faithfully,
 Rajesh Ally

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