Tuesday, 12 March 2019

The Shell North America (NA) deal

The Bahamas agreement  (deal) to award Shell NA the contract to construct and proposing to operate a US$200M LNG power plant at Clifton in Nassau Bahamas should warrant an independent investigation by the local authorities, as it has by interested agencies here in the US.

The government owned Bahamas Power and Light Company(BPLCO) is proposing to remove its existing fuel contract from the local Shell Oil Bahamas supplier, Sun Oil, and give this US Mega Millions dollar deal to Shell NA, for what is already being understood as concessions for local authorities, naming Bahamas Government official Desmond Bannister and BPLCO executives Whitney Heastie and Patrick Rollins as principals and benefactors behind the deal.

Sources reveal that the power company was just a few years back exposed in a similar unethical deal, in which board directors and other Bahamian government officials were convicted after it was discovered that large sums of US$ was paid out for leaning a then contract to US energy conglomerate ABB-Alstom SA.

We question whether this  LNG contract was fairly awarded,  as those over at GE Corp and AES whine about the decision, and bid front-runner New Fortress at their New York headquarters are wondering what went wrong and questions if Shell NA was unfairly selected by the committee put in place to thoroughly investigate and interview the short-listed bidders, a committee chaired by 70 year old Canadian Donald J McClellan, who,  now BPLCO CEO Heastie said of McClellan and his committee, that included one Lawrence Foguere, to be very well experienced, bringing a wealth of knowledge and expertise to that committee and thus leading to their selection of Shell NA for the LNG contract.

Well, here is what we found out and is this truly a coincident?

The now 71 years old Donald J McClellan and 60 plus years old Lawrence Faguere both recently worked at Sancon Commissioning, a Canadian based Start -up and Commissioning engineering firm. And while at Sancon McClellan headed a team into Grand Bahamas island to provide services at Grand Bahamas Power  Company, at the request of Emera,  the Canadian based energy provider that owns majority shares in Grand Bahamas Power Company. And it was while there he met and became acquainted with one Whitney Heastie,  then employed by the Grand Bahamas Power Company.

Heastie, who has since been terminated by the Grand Bahamas Power Company, was recently and somehow picked up by Chair-woman Ms. Darnell Osbourne, a very successful Bahamas business woman, to work  along with her as a board-member at BPLCO, a decision she will forever regret,  as Heastie and fellow-board member Patrick Rollins devise a plan to influence the ousting of not only Osbourne but the entire BPLCO board.  All of this after master-minding himself (Heastie) into the CEO position of the troubled energy monopoly and bringing onboard former board pal Rollins into a handsomely paid executive position at BPLCO,  at the approval of Government official Desmond Bannister, whose portfolio includes  BPLCO.

After immediately becoming CEO,  and under the chairmanship of Osbourne, Heastie saw the need to bring in foreign experts to review and assess the Transmission and Distribution systems on New Providence island, same island where Shell NA will construct LNG plant at US$200M.

The two-man expert team was led by one Donald J McClellan, who was accompanied by reputed and accomplished Electrical Engineer Lawrence Faguere, both now former employees of Sancon Commissioning and brought in as independent contractors.

Unknowingly to now fired board Chair-woman Osbourne, this was the table-setter for chairing the committee that selected Shell NA for the LNG contract that will eventually yield US Millions in fuel purchases.

As we dug further and went into Canada seeking out McClellan and Fougere, we were surprised to find out that both were still teamed together and now employed by CEO Whitney Heastie at BPLCO and are safely and securely enjoying their rewards on the island of Abaco, where McClellan, now 71 years old serves as Executive Managing Director of that island operations,  and he is ably assisted by Fougere,  both of whom reports directly and only to CEO Heastie.

The recent events at the national energy company has left many to wonder. Terminated Chair-woman Osbourne was blind-sided by the events,  and not wanting to play ball with Heastie, Rollins and the other Bahamian government officials, was sacked, ostracized and made the villain in a country where unaccepted Trump-like treatment of female leaders is becoming acceptable.

A local Bahamas based newspaper reported that Bahamas Prime Minister while at an anti-corruption summit in Peru recently, reported that his country lose as much as US$300M annually due to corrupt politicians and public officials. The Prime Minister has sanctioned an investigation into the scandalous and corrupt driven BPLCO.

Mr.  Bahamas Prime Minister, we will be watching and waiting to hear how it is Shell NA was awarded the LNG plant contract, over others that were offering to self-finance the venture at no cost to the country,  and only wanted to sell energy to BPLCO.

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