There has been no official announcement in St. George’s, but the cash-strapped Keith Mitchell-led New National Party (NNP) government has apparently found the money to buy out the Florida-based WRB Enterprises and end its 26-year old association with Grenlec.
In circulation on social media is a statement from the President of WRB, Robert Blanchard Jr addressed to “Grenlec Team Members” in which he announced that it is now clear that the Mitchell administration would prefer someone else to get involved in the operation of the island’s sole electricity company.
Within the past two days, reports had surfaced that Chinese investors had come up with the money to help the NNP regime to buy back majority shareholding interest in Grenlec. The government was required to come up with EC$200 million to buy out WRB.
During the recent presentation of the 2021 budget, new Finance Minister Gregory Bowen did not make any announcement of government borrowing to repurchase the 50% shareholding interest of WRB in Grenlec.
However, government had introduced a bill as part of the budget seeking Parliamentary approval to borrow EC$330 million to finance the budget.
For the past 26-years Prime Minister Mitchell and his second in command, Minister Bowen have led an onslaught against the 1994 decision of the Congress government of late Prime Minister Sir Nicholas Brathwaite to privatise the then loss-making Grenlec which was a statutory body.
As a public service, THE NEW TODAY reproduces in full the statement issued by the Grenlec Chairman on what appears to be a major change in the running of the electricity company: