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Chamber wants answers from new BPL board on tender process

The Bahamas Chamber of Commerce and Employers’ Confederation (BCCEC) intends to continue pursuing answers from Bahamas Power and Light’s (BPL) new board regarding the tender process completed this year with Shell North America winning a contract to build a new power plant.

BCCEC CEO Edison Sumner told Guardian Business yesterday that the Chamber is “very familiar” with the new board members and hopes to make inroads with the new leadership in order to “improve on corporate communication” between the two entities. BPL is also a member of the BCCEC.

The Chamber wants answers on behalf of its members on how BPL’s requests for proposals, issued last October for 80 megawatts of temporary power generation and for a supply of fuel, concluded with Shell North America winning a contract to construct a power plant that can burn liquefied natural gas (LNG), and regasification facilities at the site of BPL’s current, contaminated Clifton Pier power plant.

Former BPL Executive Chairperson Darnell Osborne released a statement on Sunday disputing government’s claims that the board was “locked in a dispute on every critical issue at great cost to the company”, and was subsequently dissolved because of this.

Sumner said the BCCEC intends to write to the new board and apprise them of the concerns they brought to the attention of the former board.

“We’re are looking forward to engaging with them and getting the answers out of them,” he said.

“They will need a little time to get caught up to speed. We expect they will review the request for proposal process that we raised questions and concerns about previously.”

The former board had not responded to the BCCEC before it was dissolved.

“It was unfortunate we didn’t get a response from the previous board,” said Sumner.

The BCCEC was making headway with the former board, according to Sumner. He congratulated the new board and said the Chamber is prepared to work closely with it, especially on energy sector policy. He also sent congratulations to Osborne for the job she did while holding her position on the BPL board.

Senior Business Reporter at The Nassau Guardian
Chester Robards rejoined The Nassau Guardian in November 2017 as a senior business reporter. He has covered myriad topics and events for The Nassau Guardian.
Education: Florida International University, BS in Journalism
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