AFC gives “real reason” Govt. scrapped Surendra contract for Specialty Hospital

AFC gives “real reason” Govt. scrapped Surendra contract

SEPTEMBER 19, 2014 | BY |  – says it can help recover US$4M advance

By Abena Rockcliffe
Leader of the Alliance For Change (AFC), Khemraj Ramjattan entered revelation mode yesterday as his Party hosted its weekly Press Conference at the Georgetown Club. Among the disclosures made by the political leader was “the real reason” behind the government’s move to scrap Surendra Engineering’s contract to construct the Specialty Hospital.

Ramjattan told the media that the AFC’s investigation into the matter, the publicized findings thereafter, as well as the Party’s public stance that Surendra’s contract should have been taken away a long time ago, have been justified.
He said that the AFC’s stance was premised on the fact that Surendra Engineering knows nothing about Specialty Hospitals. “We knew that it was a fraud being committed, whereby almost US$19M was going down the drain.”Fortunately, Ramjattan said, it “appears” to be just US$4.5M that went down.

He said it is the AFC that saved Guyana from “going further down the wrong road”.

According to Ramjattan, his Party was able to influence a cancellation of the loan from India which the government depended on to partially fund the hospital.

“The AFC wants to make it clear that the Party has the capacity—through the channels we worked with out of the  Lok Sabah in India and the international figures met during the course of investigation—to have caused the Indian Government to block the disbursement to the Guyana government. That is the reason why they are now calling Surendra a fraud; it is because of the blocked funding…That is why the government had to yank the contract from Surendra.”
However, notwithstanding the fact that the government totally ignored the opposition’s calls and warnings on the Surendra/Specialty issue, the AFC is still prepared to help the government recover its money.

Ramjattan told the media, “We (the AFC) are in a position today to help the government of Guyana and we are willing to help them to get back that 4.5 million from Surendra.”
The politician said that he spoke to political figures in India who have indicated that there are two sources Guyana can turn to for help on the issue; those being the Confederation of Indian Industry (CII) and parallel organization Federation of Indian Chambers of Commerce and Industry (FICCI).
He said that those are entities where one can go and make complaints against big companies that have done damage financially, and these bodies will in turn do the necessaries.
“So if it has taken away $4.5B from the Guyanese, we can help, and we can utilize these processes to ensure we get back from Surendra,” said Ramjattan.

Further, the politician noted that neither he nor his Party have faith that the government will move to the Courts to get back its money from Surendra.
“It is just a sham and a façade and they have worked it out how they will get their commissions. I understand the commissions have already been paid to senior government officials, and so now that the money has been blocked they have yanked themselves from each other in that symbiotic relationship they had before.”

He made it a point of note that the AFC was never against the Specialty Hospital project, but was indeed cognisant of “the fraud from tender board, hence the call for the Public Procurement Commission.”
Ramjattan said that the project should now be retendered or “maybe the next bidder with the highest points should be given the contract”.

“Once we know of companies with the capacity to do it, then let it be done. It is a good piece of investment for Guyana once everything is legitimate,” Ramjattan said.
The Member of Parliament bemoaned the fact that “lots of people said that I have collected money from Fedders Lloyd.”
Fedders Lloyd is the Indian Company which was denied the contract to build the hospital even though its bid was reportedly lower than Surendra’s.
Ramjattan sought to emphatically debunk all such allegations.

The lawyer disclosed that he had never had an interest in the company until its officials solicited his support. He said that it was based on the advice of the Indian High Commission that the company, Fedders Lloyd Limited of India, after being denied the contract, sought his assistance.
“They wanted their grievances heard or at least publicized so he (the Indian High Commissioner) sent them to me as he indicated Ramjattan is an anti-corruption crusader,” said Ramjattan.
The attorney-at-law told the media that he never charged a cent for doing what he did, as it was all in the interest of transparency.

He committed that his Party will continue to make public any legitimate information that it is aware of that will save Guyana from financial loss. He added that the AFC will continue trying to “block that culture where more and more fraudsters are enriching themselves off of Guyana.”
Recently the government scrapped Surendra’s contract on a call of fraud, saying that the company submitted forged documents. Before this, the Opposition was all against Surendra getting the contract.
Ramjattan had told the media that while Fedders Lloyd had constructed some 40 specialty hospitals across the world, Surendra Engineering, a spare parts fabricator for the sugar mills of India, had never constructed any.
The National Assembly denied financing for the Specialty Hospital because of these very reasons.

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  • compton de castro  On 09/19/2014 at 6:48 am

    Chickens are coming home…!!
    Ramjattan seems determined enough to be the ‘voice of change’….he seems hell bent and more focused than most.
    Hope he is taken seriously by main stream media.
    India is a democratic country with over a billion people.
    Their new leader a Hindu is hell bent on uniting his people…
    the equivalent of Lula the Brazilian leader who came from
    shoe shine boy to president. India’s leader similar background.

    The political class should never forget that they were elected to serve not to rule….listen first if you wish to learn.
    It is by listening that the change which is necessary will
    become a reality. Guyana and guyanese no exception.

    Que sera sera

  • Cliff  On 09/19/2014 at 12:33 pm

    It is alleged that Ramjattan was getting a big cut from Fedders Lloyd if they had gotten the Contract. So be careful of the AFC.

  • francis Jackson  On 09/21/2014 at 9:36 pm

    Corruption, Corruption, I smell a rat, where is Volda Lawrence on this one! she got sick and tumble down in the toilet, and voted for the hospital, something of the sort, it was in the paper, ask her for a comment or two — yes the chickens are coming home to roost and their might me more to be told. It is a dog fight in that part of the world. Notice they bun down the Benab, Who did? I ask, and big market crumbling, and city hall cant make up its mind who is leader, and no local elections. Just commenting and observing. don’t bring this garbage to my part of town, it would not fly by, It so sad, sad especially for the poor in Guyana who needs a better way of life – they depend on the remittance and the barrels.

    • Albert  On 09/22/2014 at 10:45 am

      Are you afraid to mention your “part of town”. Like to learn of a third world country without problems…….only that some are worse than others.

  • Norman Tewarie  On 09/22/2014 at 8:57 am


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