I read with consternation a letter titled ‘Taking over of Berbice Bridge is act of compulsory acquisition,’ Stabroek News, Nov 5, 2018, written by an honourable gentleman, Mr. Anil Nandlall.
His initial verbal assault claimed that Government action must have shocked the conscience of law-abiding citizens.
All that the Government sought to do was to save travellers over the bridge the trauma of those massive increases by this private ‘sic’ company.
My mother would have referred to Mr. Nandlall’s letter as being written by someone who is brass-faced.
We can name scores of actions by Mr. Nandlall’s Government (PPP/C) that shocked the conscience of all of us.
For brevity I will not recount the many instances but to refresh the gentleman’s memory just a few.
Under the tutelage of his colleagues, police deaths increased by one thousand percent, yes (1,000%).
On this bridge company being a private entity, the largest investment was money suborned by his Govern-ment from the National Insurance Scheme (NIS).
This and other financial acts of bullyism represented snatching money from the poor to give to the rich.
He ignored state assets, GPC, among them, Pradoville I and II, handed to selected private persons for a pittance.
The PPP/C government so plundered the NIS that it was completely destabilized and could not deliver on its promises to help the ordinary people as was intended by the architects of the National Insurance Scheme (Burnham and the PNC).
He refers to Echilibar Villas, Hope Estate and Takuba Lodge. As a member of the Government then, I am aware that in every instance there was cordial dialogue with the owners, which led to mutually satisfactory financial arrangements.
He also mentioned Citizens’ Bank? What is he talking about? Is this a figment of his imagination?
I expect in a response Mr. Nandlall to explain how it is or why it is that NIS Management was never part of the decision-making mechanism of the Berbice Bridge.
Mr. Nandlall should also let those whose consciences were shocked to explain that the cost of constructing the said Berbice River Bridge was double because the then Government ignored an earlier engineering recommendation that the Berbice Bridge should be built from Ithaca on the West Bank to Stanleytown on the East Bank of the Berbice River.
It is no secret that the PPP/C Government did not identify that location because notwithstanding the shorter distance and better soil conditions those communities were regarded as not PPP/C friendly communities.
A sad, sorry situation.
I marvelled at the boisterousness and boldness of some members of the PPP hierarchy, and I repeat some members of the PPP hierarchy.
The people who use the Berbice Bridge have been spared the trauma of having to pay these massive and unconscionable increases proposed by this private company whose only aim was to make more mighty money.