I read Phil Miller’s piece (SN 28/1) on the Oil Dorado event in London with some interest. I produced the event and interviewed Dr Bynoe (and Mr Wilks) with Sally Gibson.
The reality is somewhat different to his report.
It is always sad when journalists have a pre-conception which they refuse to shift. We call it ‘Never let the facts get in the way of a good story!’ Miller plainly did not. He was convinced ab initio that Britain is about to build a military base in Guyana, based on a loose comment by the British Defence Secretary Gavin Williamson. There is no other evidence for this.
He asked that very question of Dr Bynoe and got the answer I would expect ‘I don’t know-not my job!’
Despite this, he continued to write at least three quarters of his ‘story’ as if the putative military base was fact and there was a conspiracy to hide it.
In reality, Bynoe and Wilks answered our (and the audience’s) question about the present and future of the oil industry in Guyana openly and as best they could given the current state of play.
It was illuminating.
The audience -some diaspora, some potential investors – were grateful to them for that elucidation.
So was I.
Sadly, Miller’s ‘facts’ were not as solid as he made out. Having an agenda is not good journalism!
John ‘Bill Cotton/Reform’ Mair