Power Purchase Agreement is feasible – Pres. Ali

Underscoring that the government will continue to find solutions to citizens’ issues, President Mohamed Irfaan Ali reaffirmed that the government’s decision to purchase power temporarily is indeed feasible.

The President made these remarks during an interaction with the media on the outskirts of the Local Content Summit at the Pegasus Corporate Suites in Kingston.

President Dr Mohamed Irfaan Ali engaging the media on the outskirts of the Local Content Summit on Tuesday

“We said…that there are a number of problems. One of them is capacity. The exponential growth and the lack of capacity. How do you get capacity? You have to buy capacity. You can’t wish that capacity will come and that the problem will be solved,” President Ali explained.

The government recently announced that a power ship will soon arrive in Guyana, adding 35 megawatts (MW) of power to the electricity grid. As a matter of fact, the vessel is scheduled to leave Cuba for Guyana tomorrow.

This temporary arrangement will be in place for two years, essentially until the transformative gas-to-energy power plant comes on stream.

The President highlighted that the government is faced with several inherited challenges, owing to the lack of investment that occurred under the previous APNUAFC government.

“During that period, the investment was not supported. They did not maintain the investment. They did not add to the investment. As a result, we came back, we inherited what we left with no new capacity added, with no new money spent on maintenance…while we were faced with that, we had exponential growth. We have to meet the demand. To meet the demand, you have to buy power. It’s a simple equation,” the President asserted.

Meanwhile, President Ali was adamant that the media has a responsibility, and a role to play in educating the public about what the government is doing to address the situation in general.

He urged them too to help the government to change these ‘false narratives’ that irresponsible media are seeking to perpetrate on social media platforms which suggest that the government is not doing enough to fix the problems faced by the Guyana Power and Light Company. 

You want blackouts? This is the problem with the media. You love writing headlines…that [are about] blackout [and] oh, power outages…You love those social media posts…the media has a responsibility too,the Head of State said Tuesday as he maintained that this arrangement is completely sound and feasible. 

Since assuming office, the government has purchased approximately 40MW of electricity. Next year, an additional 300 megawatts (MW) are expected to be added to the national grid, owing to the gas-to-energy project.

The government had pledged to resuscitate the Amaila Falls Hydropower Project in its 2020 manifesto. A request for proposals was made last year for proposals which include the construction of a hydro dam, transmission lines from Amaila to Linden, and sub-stations at the Amaila site. These proposals are being evaluated.