I thought that blame was being laid in the wrong direction when I saw a caption which said that ExxonMobil missed a golden opportunity to reverse their wrongdoings. Actually, it was a golden opportunity upon the signing of the contract for the production of oil, for the Government of Guyana to obtain a fair deal on behalf of us, the Guyanese people, to propel us into becoming the Saudi Arabia of South and Latin America, exponentially improving our standard of living. The APNU+AFC coalition was voted into office with high expectations and fervour that they would competently manage the affairs of state and bring us out of decades of despair and mismanagement. Their interaction with ExxonMobil reeks of incompetence and more.
It is depressing and heart rending to know that a long serving senior official of the US Department of Energy, Dr Vincent Adams, correctly feels that the Guyanese government should have settled for substantially more than the US$18 million accepted at the signing of the contract. He said that ExxonMobil’s value increased significantly upon their discovery of oil in Guyana and their overall gains through that discovery would have made them able to comfortably pay us many times the amount paid when they signed the contract.
It makes absolutely no sense that our government has made Guyana responsible for the myriad costs associated with the production of oil by ExxonMobil, even for oil spills and its associated litigation.
Ramon Gaskin, Nigel Hinds, Melinda Janki, Craig Sylvester et al, have so eruditely covered all the evident flaws and unacceptability of our government entering into such an unconscionable agreement with ExxonMobil.
ExxonMobil is a business entity and like any other, is seeking to derive maximum profits. Since this is the case, we need to be wary of any unscrupulous act that may be conducted and always safeguard our precious resources.