Fri | May 29, 2020

Clash in parliament over questions about Petrojam

Published:Tuesday | June 26, 2018 | 4:13 PM

The House of Representatives erupted into chaos a short while ago after Opposition member Peter Bunting expressed displeasure that Dr Andrew Wheatley, the Technology and Energy Minister, would not be answering questions related to issues plaguing the state-owned oil refinery Petrojam. 

The opposition has been hammering the government about the management of Petrojam where there have been allegations of nepotism, corruption, and financial mismanagement.

Karl Samuda, the Leader of Government Business, indicated that the questions would be answered by the end of the Sectoral Debate on July 3.

However, Bunting told House Speaker Pearnel Charles that he would only agree to give Wheatley more time to answer the questions if the House is satisfied with the reasons that caused the delay as outlined in the Standing Orders. 

A shouting match then ensued between both sides of the aisle.

Opposition members stood with Bunting, ignoring calls by Charles to obey his instructions to quiet down. 

Calm was eventually restored.

Here are some of the questions to be answered:

Will the Minister describe the process being used to select the contractor to upgrade the Vacuum Distillation Unit at Petrojam?

Will the Minister list the management and technical personnel that have left Petrojam since March 2016?

Will the Minister state the compensation packages for the current Human Resource Manager and the previous HR manager and, if there is a difference, justify the difference in terms of their competence and experience in industrial relations and personnel matters? 

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