Berbice business leader upset at power company's operations

Guyana Chronicle
January 3, 2000

CONSULTANT to the Berbice Chamber of Commerce and Development Association, Mr Ramdial Bhookmohan is disappointed at the operations of the new Guyana Power and Light Limited (GPL) saying it is still to make serious efforts to address the electricity problems.

He said that since the firm took over the ailing state-owned Guyana Electricity Corporation (GEC) last year, he thought it would have addressed some of the major priority areas.

"The management of GPL should now inform the nation of its objectives through a scheduled work plan," Bhookmohan suggested.

He said such a programme should also contain a deadline for completing the works set out.

He said it was surprising to read in the media notices of scheduled power outages instead of specifics on ending the crisis that "has plagued us for years" and called on the government, the partner in the GPL deal to intervene in the matter.

Bhookmohan, also Vice Chairman in the Private Sector Commission, said the business sector was suffering tremendously in the production of goods and services.

Of some concern to the business executive is what he described as a unilateral billing system in which consumers have been receiving two or three invoices per month for payments resulting in a large sum of collection over the company's estimated rates collection.

He listed as another issue of concern the hundreds of customers who daily have to wait long hours to be attended to at the main office in New Amsterdam because of faulty administrative practices.

Matters ranging from collection and payment of bills, applications for meters, queries and refunds are being attended to in the congested location which does not augur well for the investors with the kind of resources and personnel they have, he said.

According to Bhookmohan, there are reports that the management is removing cable from their Canefield, Canje, Berbice plant to the city to supplement the Demerara system.

He queried, too, whether there is any requirement for transformers, connectors and other related items also reportedly in short supply.

In expressing New Year's greetings, Bhookmohan wished the government, all Guyanese and the GPL a promising 2000, saying he too is looking forward for an audited report from the power entity as is the normal practice for firms.

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