No increase in electricity bills- Jagdeo

Last Updated on Friday, 19 April 2024, 5:40 by Denis Chabrol

Vice President Bharrat Jagdeo on Thursday assured Guyanese that they would not be paying more for electricity, although government is leasing a 36 megawatt electricity generation ship.

“There will be no increase in the price for electricity because of this rental,” he told a news conference.

Mr Jagdeo explained that under the deal with Urbacon Concessions Investment (UCI), the state-owned Guyana Power and Light would have to pay a monthly charter fee of 6.62 US cents per kilowatt hour and a monthly operation and maintenance fee of 0.98 cents per kilowatt hour.  Under the two-year deal GPL said the provider would be responsible for operation and maintenance.

GPL said it has already paid a mobilisation fee of US$1 million and would be responsible for supplying heavy fuel oil.

“They are bringing the vessel, you’re paying for the capacity. For example; for the use of the equipment and the operation and maintenance cost and (GPL) have to supply the fuel,” Mr Jagdeo added.

GPL said the power ship would arrive in Guyana on May 1 and would be connected to the grid at Everton, Berbice River by May 8.

The Vice President’s assurance came about three hours after the opposition called for details and for the nation to be told whether they would have to pay more for electricity due to the purchase of 17 second-hand generators last year , with an output of 28.9 megawatts, for US$27 million.

“The government needs to commit that Guyanese will not be paying more for electricity as a result of their mistake,” said People’s National Congress Reform-aligned economist, Elson Lowe. He said government had several years to fix the State-owned Guyana Power and Light, in addition to the inherited plan of 46.5 megawatts of dual-fuel  generators.

The government and the opposition A Partnership for National Unity+Alliance For Change (APNU+AFC) have been trading blame over which administration was responsible for the state of the electricity sector.