Maynard insists BPL in crisis
Bahamas Electrical Workers Union (BEWU) President Paul Maynard insisted yesterday that despite contrary claims by Bahamas Power and Light (BPL) officials, New Providence is experiencing a power crisis.
His comments came after weeks of load shedding and a power outage across New Providence on Tuesday, which Minister of Public Works Desmond Bannister said was the result of someone illegally dumping debris near a critical BPL transmission pole.
BPL Chairman Dr. Donovan Moxey yesterday insisted that there is no crisis at the power company, but Maynard vehemently disagreed.
“It is a crisis,” he said. It’s a crisis. That’s the problem. The problem is they don’t want to admit that it’s that bad, but it is.
“I can’t tell them what to do. In their mind they’re trying to [sort] it out.
“But see, you’ve got to say that it is a crisis. You know it’s a crisis. I know it’s a crisis. Everybody else knows it’s a…crisis except [BPL].
“And you have to admit the fact that it is.
“If you can’t admit the fact that it is, then, okay, you carry right on. Stay in your little dream world, but it’s a crisis.”
He added, “He’s trying to give you all hope…”
Maynard also said that the transmission and distribution (T&D) system must be upgraded, and that Tuesday’s outage would not have been so severe had the network been less antiquated.
“What should have happened was, if we had the T&D sorted out, what should have happened was the breaker should have just operated,” he said.
“Some parts of the island would have gone off, but not the whole island. It shouldn’t happen that way.”
BPL has historically struggled to meet the increased demand for electricity on New Providence during the summer months.
Last September, several fires caused extensive damage to the Clifton Pier Power Station.
BPL announced in March that Finnish technology group Wartsila will install a new 132-megawatt engine power plant at Clifton at a cost of $95 million to increase the generation capacity on New Providence.
Moxey said last week that while the installation of rental generation will provide some relief from the continuous outages, load shedding could be possible until the installation of that new plant is complete.
Education: Virginia in Charlottesville, BA in Foreign Affairs and Spanish