Home' Trinidad and Tobago Guardian : September 22nd 2017 Contents A6 news
Friday, September 22, 2017
Nothing to do with us
Despite conspiracy theories on
the sudden appearance of the
controversial Ocean Flower 2
vessel, Prime Minister Dr Keith
Rowley says if the boat's owner
wanted to come to T&T it wasn't
a Port Authority of T&T or Gov-
Rowley spoke about the mat-
ter during yesterday's post-Cabi-
net brie ing as he ielded queries
on the vessel's sudden presence
on Wednesday, even as owners
Bridgemans Services LP made a
second tender to PATT for the
Rowley, noting the vessel's ar-
rival yesterday, said, "We under-
stand how it looks."
He added principals for the
vessel may feel being in T&T is a
good place at this point in time.
"We certainly want a boat, I'm
anxious to have the Port select
a vessel. If the Ocean Flower
2 was in Panama and wanted
don't know that's a Port or Gov-
ernment issue," he said.
"I see they've said they put in
a bid. But there are 12 vessels
tendering - a lot more than last
time and if there are 12 now
there's a good chance one will
meet meet our needs."
Rowley said anybody can sail
into T&T, but he noted the OF2's
irst contract had been termi-
nated for reasons and the PATT
had clearly said what the situa-
"Subsequent to that, the Port
went out to another tender and
anybody with a boat is free to
subscribe to the tender and the
Port will evaluate what's been
subscribed to," the PM said.
On a speci ic short term pro-
posal by the Ocean Flower 2,
Rowley said the PATT board had
made it very clear about dealing
with this particular vessel.
"The people are trying to get
business. The Port chairman
said they have terminated and
gave reasons why.
They said they had arrange-
ments with these people to bring
their boat from Korea to Panama
to be inspected in Panama be-
fore coming to T&T," he said.
"But the boat didn't pass mus-
ter. They had a period of time to
bring it and were allowed an ex-
tension, but it didn't come and
the Port exercised the right to
"The Port went to a second
tender which closed (Wednes-
day) and Ocean Flower 2 of-
fered their boat - so be it. If they
wanted to sail to T&T, let them
sail, they're free to tender.
It's for the Port to now do an
evaluation and determine what
they do there."
Rowley said some felt the is-
sues that developed with the
ferries arose within the Govern-
ment, but he said the facts didn't
bear that out.
"We'll tell T&T what the facts
are and let the chips fall where
they may," he said.
OPM Minister Stuart Young
said the Ocean Flower 2 had
gone for dry docking and re-
pairs at Chaguaramas. He said
Government's legal position is
the vessel's contract had been
cancelled and terminated in ac-
cordance with the contract and
a new tender was issued.
"Anyone is allowed to put in (a
tender) and be evaluated. We're
not being premature with the
evaluation articulated by the
Port," Young said. See Pages A7
Government has begun a forensic
audit on documents concerning the
Port Authority of T&T's ferry service
after "people" were suspended
and phone, computer records and
a computer server were seized,
OPM Minister Stuart Young said
Young confirmed this as he accused
Joint Select Committee member
Wade Mark of deliberately trying
to mislead the public on actions
which occurred at Wednesday's JSC
meeting on the ferry service where
the Prime Minister appeared.
Young said Mark referred to a
document the PM spoke about - an
email from the Cabo Star's first
owner in Mexico to now suspended
Port manager Leon Grant.
This was at an email address "patnt.
Young said Mark attempted to
suggest the PM referred to an email
with the Port's address - and that
the PM's evidence was questionable
- and asked Grant leading questions
on it. But Young noted the
forensic audit being done on Port
Rowley slammed Mark, saying he
"A former Speaker of the House...
yet he misrepresented key facts
to cast doubt on my presentation,
presenting opportunity for a public
officer - who has serious questions
to answer - to give him a loophole
to say it wasn't his email. It's
Rowley said if the Second Session
of Parliament - due to have ended
at midnight last night - was still
ongoing, Government would have
Mark investigated by Parliament's
He said the Third session of
Parliament begins next Friday.
PATT has 11 vessels to choose from
Works and Transport Minister
Rohan Sinanan, who agreed to
the Port Authority of T&T's rec-
ommendation to cancel the con-
tract for the Ocean Flower 2 with
Bridgemans Services Group, is
now saying the new process "was
a public tender advertisement in
the newspaper and anyone was
free to tender."
He made the comment after
the T&T Guardian reported exclu-
sively yesterday that Bridgemans
had tendered the same vessel in
the latest tender process offered
by the PATT for a passenger ves-
Bridgemans is one of six com-
pany's which put in tenders for
the sea bridge service.
Gateway Cruises tendered three
vessels - CNV Super Ferry, Super
Ferry 2 and the Super Runner.
Ocean Star Shipping Limited
submitted one - FB Bridge.
Bridgemans offered one - Ocean
Fortune Maritime LLC tendered
1 - M.V Kiara
Sea Jets Maritime tendered ive
- MV Terra Jet, HSC Blue Power,
HSC Champ Jet 2, HSC Mega Jet
and the HSC Paros Jet.
Paragon Protection Construc-
tion Limited meanwhile submit-
ted a letter declining the tender.
Sinanan said the valuation pro-
cess had not started, "but once
the evaluation is inished" a sub-
mission will be made to him as
PATT of icials told the T&T
Guardian they are now awaiting
word from the Government on
the evaluation committee.
Prime Minister Dr Keith Row-
ley told the Joint Select Commit-
tee of Parliament on Monday that
"when we put the evaluation
team in place we will want To-
bago to have an involvement in
the evaluation," because it was
felt that it was at the evaluation
stage something went wrong with
respect to the the Super Fast Gali-
Rowley told the JSC that "the
Minister will consult the THA and
the private sector in Tobago, to
add maybe two more persons to
the evaluation team."
Sinanan said yesterday his min-
istry is in the "process of putting
the evaluation team together"
and assured that within the next
day or so contact will be made
with the Tobago stakeholders. He
said the Ministry of the Attorney
General is assisting with the pro-
The Ocean Flower 2 arrived in
the country on Wednesday and
Bridgemans Services Group vice
president Andrew Purdey said
it was here for dry docking and
the installation of T Foils which
he said will "improve ship ride
performance and speed." The in-
stallation and complete routine
maintenance will take about a
week, he said.
PM on Ocean Flower 2 return
Prime Minister Dr Keith Rowley and Minister in the Office of the Prime Minister and the Attorney General Office,
Stuart Young, during yesterday's post-Cabinet press briefing.
PICTURE SHIRLEY BAHADUR
Works and Transport Minister
FORENSIC AUDIT OF PATT
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