Wartsila Power Plant overruns in the MILLIONS and yet serious load shedding continues in the capital…

Bahamas Power and Light’s Clifton Power Plant
Executive Chairman of Bahamas Power and Light Patrick Rollins and CEO Whitney Heastie. (Photo by Torrell Glinton)

NASSAU| Bahamas Press is now prepared to say the new 132-megawatt Wartsila Power Plant, which is said to have cost Bahamian taxpayers some $95 million is reported to be experiencing a major and continuous cost overrun, that will probably shoot the final taxpayer burden way over $140MM when you add up all the auxiliary and emergency costs to what was publicly stated!

When the facility first came online, Whitney Heastie, CEO of BPL, said consumers will eventually see the benefits on their electricity bills.

“When this project is completed customers will see a substantial improvement in power generation reliability in New Providence and a lower fuel charge on their monthly billing,” he said.

“The lower fuel charge will result from both, the use of more efficient generation, along with the ability to burn lower price fuel.”

But guess what, they are burning the most expensive fuel and also paying foreigners to operate the plant while Bahamians, who can do the same work, are either left hustling for work or jobless. What is dis? It’s THE PEOPLE’s TIME!

BPL on Tuesday this week had serious issues with the new plant, and to add insult to injury, the BPL system is experiencing some chronic “Transmission and Distribution issues” in eastern New Providence, Garden Hills, and Southern New Providence all day; thereby leaving unsuspecting and cooped up residents in dangerous toxic heat as the country remains on a 24 hour, lockdown as like in Alcatraz. Boy I tell ya!

Minister Desmond Bannister

Bahamas Press invites BPL’s Minister Desmond Bannister and CEO Heastie to come clean with the Bahamian people and lay all the numbers on the table; prove that the transaction with the new engine did not escalate over budget, and prove that every single engine is running today April 14th, 2020!

Where is BPL finding all this extra money to fund these overruns for the Wartsila plant? And when will the public know this? And what has happened to transparency and accountability deep inside the Minnis Government, which took an oath to protect the public purse of the Bahamas?

And when those in charge at BPL are done coming clean with the numbers, the power company should do this: Invite the media to the new BPL facility at Clifton Pier to show them all the engines running! We will put money down that this will not happen!

We report yinner decide!