OPPOSITION Leader Kamla Persad-Bissessar in a statement yesterday accused the Prime Minister of meddling in TT’s energy affairs in his current trip to Europe and the United States to meet energy companies operating in TT.
Saying the Opposition thinks Tobago’s east coast has large gas fields which need incentivised exploration, she said, “We caution the Prime Minister that his incompetent meddling in energy affairs will put these gas finds at risk, to the detriment of us all.”
Persad-Bissessar said Dr Rowley’s set meetings with the energy companies are just an attempt to save face after being humiliated and outmanoeuvred by them in negotiations without the advice of trained technocrats, putting TT’s energy security at risk.
“These meetings are not geared towards expanding our relationship and operations with these companies but are rather geared towards reclaiming lost ground and trying to regain favour with these firms, as a result of his government’s incompetence.”
Persad-Bissessar accused the Government of not engaging with these companies by diplomacy, economic incentives and statesmanship, but by bullying tactics which had even personally attacked the qualifications of a top manager.
She said after the Government’s alleged “arrogant and irresponsible behaviour” toward these energy companies in the past four years, Rowley now has little, if any, negotiating power.
“Outmanoeuvred, outnegotiated and humiliated, the Prime Minister is likely to agree to deals which may not be in the best interest of our country in order for him to save face.” she charged.
“It is clear that the Prime Minister, already burdened with the pressure of hiding that he has crashed the energy sector, would look to pull a public-relations gimmick as he did with the Dragon Gas Deal and Houston Energy agreements.”
She said the Dragon deal is yet to materialise, and the Houston agreement has resulted in a less than favourable outcome for NGC’s profitability