Opposition Member of Parliament and Former Public Works Minister, David Patterson is of the view that the country will have to brace itself for daily power outages if the Guyana Power and Light (GPL) company does not fix some of its current challenges.
Patterson said he believes the challenges currently facing GPL are well over fifteen in number, and range from faulty equipment to improper maintenence.
During an AFC Press Conference today, Mr. Patterson said the bulk of GPL’s issues is in its procurement processes.
He accused the Government of purchasing substandard power generation equipment that cannot work beyond three months—thereby creating a condition for the company to always be in need of new equipment.
“Under the guise of public procurement, they started opening tenders for these things and go for the lowest bidder—what we did was to go directly to the manufacturer of the best products. So when we bought a fuse or a spacer we went to the European Company or so, they gone back to what they have said is the procurement method and they use these middle men who go and buy these cheap plastic products which give you only three months of service,” Patterson noted.
The Opposition MP explained that the Coalition Government was able to reduce the frequency of blackouts during its term in office.
He expressed worry that GPL now seems to be rolling back all of the plans that were put in place by the previous administration to ensure a more stable service.
“Right now, there is a deficiency in power supply because nothing is working so for the next two years when they decide to bring the gas-to shore project, if we do not start to address these issues, every single day—as we are having now we will be having power failure,” Patterson predicted.
According to Patterson, even the government’s much touted gas-to-shore project will not bring much ease, if GPL does not get its lines in order.
Over the past several weeks the Guyana Power and Light has been forced to apologize for unplanned power outages.
While some of the outages were not caused directly by GPL, there were a number of power outages that were directly linked to the company’s power generation systems.