Monday, January 30, 2012

Neal & Massy energy unit pursuing investment opportunities in Guyana

Trinidadian-based conglomerate Neal and Massy Holdings Limited’s Energy and Industrial Gases Business Unit is pursuing investment opportunities in Guyana.

President and Chief Executive Officer of the Group, E. Gervase Warner, said in the company’s 2011 Annual Report that the energy and industrial gases investment projects unit is contemplating a number of investments in downstream industries, as well as further acquisitions in the energy services field, and exploring opportunities for its services companies in Africa. Similar opportunities will also be pursued in neighbouring Suriname, he said.

“The Energy and Industrial Gases and Information Technology and Communications Business Units will make up the Strategic Investments Portfolio. This portfolio will host groups of businesses for which Neal and Massy has developed strategic growth plans,” Warner indicated.

The Group has specific strategies for diversifying its Energy and Industrial Gas investments to downstream projects, additional energy services and additional geographies. The Group also has specific plans to grow its ITC investments by pursuing projects which will allow it to establish a substantive presence in the managed services sector, and by expanding its service offerings locally and internationally.

During the course of 2011, the Group pursued several strategic initiatives, some of which have begun to bear fruit, while others are in very early stages of development. These include; rollout of the new Neal and Massy Vision: A Force for Good – The Most Responsible and Profitable Investment Holding/Management Company in the Caribbean Basin, customer service Improvement, energy and industrial gases investment projects, geographic and retail expansion and executive development and recruiting, he said.

Freddie Kissoon's two academic papers

Paper one.

A few years ago, Kissoon gave a talk at an academic conference at UG on Conflict Resolution from notes he pulled from his back pocket. It took two years for Drs Cedric Grant and Rishi Thakur to whip that into a paper that could be included in the volume of papers subsequently published.

Paper two.

Then more recently, Kissoon gave a talk at the Public Library from just as unkempt notes. He now claims that this became a “65” page paper that his lawyers used in the ongoing court case by President Jagdeo against him for libel. We challenge any academic to peruse that “paper” and deem it to be academic.

WIPA calls on 'defunct' GCB to adhere to rule of law by respecting multiple court decisions

The West Indies Players’ Association on Sunday afternoon flayed remarks attributed to Sanjeev Datadin, a lawyer for the Guyana Cricket Board, that players here risked an ICC ban if they competed in matches scheduled by the Interim Management Committee established by the government here. The body also urged the 'defunct' GCB to adhere to the rule of law by respecting multiple decisions of the court.

A part of the statement read as follows:

Firstly, the defunct GCB has been declared by the Chief Justice of Guyana to be a legal non-entity, not having the capacity to sue or be sued. Accordingly, without the protection and structure of a corporate veil, the unincorporated GCB cannot afford the affected players any safeguards whatsoever.

Moreover, on Thursday 26th January 2012, an article published by the Kaieteur News confirmed that the full sitting of the High Court in Guyana, presided over by Justice James Bovell Drakes and Justice William Ramlal, dismissed the GCB’s application to quash the decision of December 23, 2011 that granted Dr Frank Anthony, the Honorable Minister of Sport of Guyana, the power to appoint an IMC in place of the GBC. The Judges, in handing down their decision, informed the GCB representatives, including attorneys Sanjeev Datadin and Fenton Ramsahoye, that following this final ruling before the Full Court they would not be allowed to challenge again.

Accordingly, at this juncture, it is clear that the rule of law has been observed in Guyana, and in so doing, all parties concerned must respect the multiple decisions of the court. Anything less would not only amount to blind and purposeless defiance of the law, but more importantly, an intentional stampede to trample of the rights of innocent players. Certainly, any objections can be made quietly and behind closed doors, and in the interim a short term compromise can be worked out, even if it involves self-sacrifice to allow players to play under the governance of the legal body.

Nagamootoo amongst the delusional who have Jagdeo on their brain

Blaming President Ramotar for the non-renewal of Freddie Kissoon’s contract to lecture at UG by the University Council, Moses Nagamootoo screamed that this was former President BharratJagdeo’s doing from his “political grave”. The ranks of the delusional that have Jagdeo on their brain have swollen. But for Nagamootoo, the condition is more understandable.

His delusion, after all, is long entrenched. Way back in memory lane, on some foray into the Rupununi, Nagamootoo claims he heard what no one then or since heard: Cheddi promised him the leadership of the PPP. It’s a clear sign of delusion when a person starts to hear voices. It might be a symptom of an even more serious mental disorder, but later for that.
Then the obsession with Jagdeo. Here’s a man believing he will be leader, just doesn’t begin to spruce up his appearance and speak with an affected accent – he quits his Cheddi-bestowed government job and starts law school. A big, grown man in his 50s going back to school with teenagers! Now that’s unbridled ambition. And after all the slogging and humiliation, Jagdeo becomes president! Ouch!
It’s enough to make a grown man weep and gnash his teeth. So Nagamootoo jumps the PPP ship and joins the AFC with the promise from ‘friend’ Ramjattan he will become ‘Vice-President!’ Unfortunately, as President Ramotar predicted in his home village of Whim, he got “larwah”! Trotman and APNU checkmated him on the Speakership and his erstwhile buddy Ramjattan checkmated him from even an executive position in the AFC, much less “leader”. Who’s in the “political grave”?
But in his unbridled attack on President Ramotar and Jagdeo for Kissoon’s termination of contract, Nagamootoo betrays his lack of legal experience or training in law. He should have listened to the more circumspect response of his colleague Ramjattan who had taken him into chambers. Ramjattan, Kissoon’s self-declared ‘close friend’ merely allowed that if the employment contract has been breached, he would assist Kissoon in court. If it were breached. Nagamootoo’s another legal novice who’s never going to make senior counsel!

“Tripartite” discussions a farce as AFC & APNU working together in unison

Liveinguyana sees the current “Tripartite” discussions between the ruling PPP/C and opposition AFC/APNU as nothing but a “farce”.
Our position was arrived at based on the earlier announcement between these two opposition parties that they have already met to craft a memorandum of understanding which will see them working together and acting in unison.
It it therefore logical to conclude that though they may present different items to President Ramotar they’ve already plotted and synchronised their tactics.

West Indies Players Association (WIPA) warns Sanjeev Datadin over intimidation of its members in Guyana

- says Kaieteur News statement 'grossly inaccurate as a matter of law and fact'

The West Indies Players Association (WIPA) is concerned about the intimidation of its members in Guyana as the standoff between the Guyana Cricket Board (GCB) and the Government-appointed Interim Management Committee (IMC) continues.

In a media release on Friday last, WIPA challenged Sanjeev Datadin, a lawyer representing the Guyana Cricket Board, over threats issued to players who have been called to training by the IMC for the upcoming West Indies Cricket Board Regional four-day tournament.

In a Kaiteur News article on Wednesday, Datadin was quoted as saying: "Should the players turn up for matches scheduled by the IMC they run the risk of being banned from all international cricket."

However, the players' body, in a release, labelled the statement as "without any proper basis whatsoever" and "grossly inaccurate as a matter of law and fact".

It stated further: "WIPA unequivocally states that interpretation of the rules of the ICC as well as the thinly-veiled threats contained in the article that purports to quote Mr. Datadin is mischievous and a misrepresentation of the applicable rules. WIPA views this purposeful act as intended solely to cause fear in the minds of the players in a desperate attempt to force them to support" what WIPA describes as "the defunct and currently illegal Guyana Cricket Board".

The standoff in Guyana arose after Acting Chief Justice Ian Chang recommended that the government intervene in the running of Guyana's cricket in the national interest after the GCB had been taken to court by the Berbice Cricket Board over disputed election results.

This resulted in the setting up of the IMC, headed by former Guyana and West Indies captain Clive Lloyd.

The WIPA release also noted that the Guyana High Court recently dismissed the GCB's application to quash Justice Chang's ruling of December 23, 2011.

The release concluded by stating: "WIPA is concerned for the welfare of its players and is wary of the advice being thrust upon them by the GCB's attorneys, especially given the history. WIPA is ever wary of persons who appear to be seeking their own self-promotion to the detriment of the game of cricket."

Friday, January 27, 2012

Freddie Kissoon's lawyers resist efforts to tender Kaieteur News newspapers in libel case

Lawyers for Kaieteur News columnist Freddie Kissoon today rejected efforts by legal team of former President Bharrat Jagdeo to tender several volumes of Kaieteur News newspapers as evidence in a libel suit against the former University Lecturer. Jagdeo’s lawyer, Senior Counsel Bernard Dos Santos got Office of the President Media Officer, Rawle Kissoon to bring and identify several binders of the newspapers from June 2010 to January, 2012. Kissoon, who listed his duties which include media monitoring and research, told the court that he also has copies of newspapers before June 2010. The matter was adjourned until January 30th.

Freddie Kissoon produced 2 academic papers in 26 years of lecturing at the University of Guyana

For years after he started a column in the Stabber News, now dismissed University of Guyana lecturer Freddie Kissoon passed himself off as “Dr Kissoon”. Only after this was challenged did he drop this fraudulent claim of his.

Did he also try this stunt on UG? The records should be checked.
We understand Kissoon’s foisted contract was not renewed because he did not ‘produce” and research. Two papers in 26 years and neither peer-reviewed? That is the understatement of the year.

Christopher Ram’s fledgling legal career has taken another nosedive.

Belatedly matriculated legal novice Christopher “Suspenders” Ram’s fledgling legal career took another nosedive when Chief Justice Ian Chang threw out his plea for a Conservatory Order in APNU’s MP case seeking to revise former President Jagdeo’s pension. Justice Chang ruled sternly that contra the argument of Ram, the President’s (Benefits and Other Facilities) Act reveals that the benefits have nothing to do with pensions and gratuities in which Article 181 (2) of the Constitution speaks.

The junior lawyer still confuses the term “legal practice’ with the everyday understanding of “the activity of one not proficient in it”. He’ll never make senior council this way for sure! There are lots of vacancies for legal clerks For Your Information (FYI).

Government/Hauwei Technologies plans to string fibre optic cable from Crabwood Creek to Leonora

The Government of Guyana announced plans to string a fibre optic cable along the modern transmission main from Crabwood Creek in Region Six to Leonora in Region Three through a partnership with Hauwei Technologies, China’s largest networking and telecommunications equipment supplier.
The modernisation of the local telecommunications sector with the laying of the fibre optic cable is regarded as a good investment for Guyana by President and Chief Executive Officer (CEO) of Atlantic Tele Network (ATN) Michael Prior. Prior, accompanied by ATN’s President of International Operations Paul Bowersock and CEO of the Guyana Telephone and Telegraph (GT&T) Yog Mahadeo recently met President Donald Ramotar at the Office of the President.

Guyanese born private investor looking to set up oil refinery- 5000 jobs could be created

Guyanese could be paying significantly less for fuel in the near future with the establishment of an oil refinery, the first of its kind in the South American country.

A Guyanese born private investor is currently in the country meeting with stakeholders to finalise funding, site location, preparation, and documentation. If negotiations are successful, the refinery could be assembled and become operational in as little as 12 months.

The investor said that the refinery would have the capacity to produce 100,000 to 200,000 barrels per day. More than 5,000 new jobs directly related to the industry would be created.

The establishment of the refinery, the investor noted, is not dependent on an imminent discovery of oil in Guyana. A large volume of oil is already being produced in the region which provides a need for such a facility, he said.

Oil and gas exploration companies Repsol and CGX Energy are scheduled to begin drilling operations off Guyana’s coast shortly at locations believed to contain massive deposits of oil.

Investment ratio not enough to maintain high growth rates in Latin America & the Caribbean- ECLAC

Economic Commission for Latin America and the Caribbean (ECLAC), Executive Secretary Alicia Bárcena said that “in Latin America and the Caribbean, the investment ratio is not enough to maintain high growth rates. There are mainly gaps in infrastructure. Unfortunately, investment has been one of the adjustment variables in previous crises.” She made the comments at Wednesday’s opening of the XXIV regional seminar on Fiscal Policy, which ended on Thursday at the headquarters of ECLAC in Santiago, Chile. Apart from Bárcena, other speakers during the first session included deputy director of the Fiscal Affairs Department of the International Monetary Fund (IMF), Adrienne Cheasty; deputy director for Public Governance and Territorial Development of the Organisation for Economic Cooperation and Development (OECD), Mario Marcel; and Sergio Wulff Gobetti from the Finance Ministry of Brazil.
The speakers agreed that Latin America is currently in a privileged situation in the midst of the crisis which some countries in Europe are facing. They highlighted, in particular, the control of public finances and debt sustainability, regional assets which must be maintained, they stressed.
“The quality of public finances has improved in Latin America,” said Bárcena. “Public debt has been significantly lowered and its profile and composition are more balanced, tax revenues and the average tax rate increased, the decrease in interest payments has created significant fiscal space and social public spending has been maintained,” she said.
However, “investment in Latin America and the Caribbean is not only highly volatile, but during economic upturns it is also unable to recover from its fall during the downturn. Private investment has not been dynamic and public investment has been declining,” stated the executive secretary.
She highlighted that in Latin America gross fixed capital formation represents almost 20 per cent of gross domestic product (GDP), while in some countries in Asia Pacific, it reaches 40 per cent.
According to Bárcena, investment in the region should be aimed at improving infrastructure, increasing research, science and innovation, promoting banking institutions for development and developing cleaner matrices from an environmental perspective. Bárcena urged the countries of the region to consolidate a “sustainable and at the same time stabilising” fiscal policy, with a low debt-GDP ratio in good times and counter-cyclical expenditure policies during recessive phases.
Fiscal policy must contribute to long term economic growth through stable investment in physical and human capital and innovation. It must also have a redistributive impact, which includes progressive tax rates, she indicated. The Fiscal Observatory of Latin America and the Caribbean (OFILAC), which aims to contribute to the improvement of fiscal policy in the region through the dissemination of studies and debate with different actors participating in this area, was launched as part of the seminar.
OFILAC is an ECLAC initiative which involves the participation of OECD, the Inter-American Centre of Tax Administrations (CIAT) and the Institute of Fiscal Studies (IEF). It receives support from the Spanish Agency for International Cooperation and Development (AECID), and the German International Cooperation Agency (GIZ).
The website for the observatory, which contains news, activities, statistics and publications on the current fiscal situation in Latin America and the Caribbean, is aimed primarily at economic authorities, international officials, academics and students.
The XXIV regional seminar was organised by ECLAC, through the Latin American Institute for Economic and Social Planning (ILPES), with support from IMF, OECD, the World Bank and the Inter-American Development Bank (IDB), under the auspices of the German Federal Ministry for Economic Cooperation and Development (BMZ).