EDITOR, The Tribune
Your headline on Friday read, “We Won’t Pay” referring to the UB negotiations with the lecturers could well be a headline for the situation with BPL or BEC. We are told there are unpaid bills amounting to $90m to $100m and BPL is having trouble collecting this money. It would seem to me that with that amount outstanding everyone in the Bahamas must be delinquent and at night there would be no light shining from any house or office. But that is not so. I would suggest a weekly table in the newspaper indicating the total amount outstanding and the weekly reduction. At least we can all see what progress is or is not being made.
Meanwhile the Government is borrowing a large sum of money under what is called a “Rate Reduction Bond” which seems to me to be a Rate Increase Bond as those of us who pay our bills, a little later than we used to because they are growing monthly, are to be penalised to cover the interest and capital cost of the bond on behalf of those who do not and perhaps in many cases cannot pay. This is where “We Won’t Pay” raises its ugly head. More households will be unable to pay or refuse to pay, so the number not paying increases and eventually there is no money to run the generators or pay the rate reduction Bond. Power in any country is absolutely essential in today’s world and cheap power is essential for businesses to compete and the poorer among us to have a comfortable life. The cost of electricity in the Bahamas is among the most expensive per unit in the world if not the most expensive so now it is going to cost more. Where are we Mr Bannister - has anyone thought this out?? To say that the utility “can no longer be lax and complacent with the people’s money” to quote the Minister suggests they have been which is disgraceful.
On top of this the Government is moaning about the position the Bahamas holds in the world for ease of doing business. No wonder with electricity costs sky-high, D is Depressing for education so no educated work force and an Immigration Department that has never been able to drag itself into the 21st century, I am surprised we are even on the charts.
Again it is political interference in every aspect of our lives that causes a lot of the problems. Please members of the political class free this country from the yoke of political interference and let the experts try to mend the broken fences.
PATRICK H THOMSON
November 9, 2019