Home' Trinidad and Tobago Guardian : December 22nd 2013 Contents news
December 22, 2013 www.guardian.co.tt Sunday Guardian
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PH driver James Boatswain left his 70-year-
old mother Elaine Jackman at home on Saturday
night and went to lime with friends.
However, he never returned as gunmen shot him
outside the National Recreation Bar at Caratal Road,
Gasparillo. Police said Boatswain died from a single
gunshot to his head.
The murder occurred shortly after midnight in
full view of several witnesses. Police said Boatswain,
38, of Jules Trace, Springland, was liming outside
the bar when two masked men came up to him
and fired several shots. The men escaped in a
waiting vehicle. Supt Cecil Santana and PC Ram-
persad and Insp Mc Intosh of Gasparillo gave chase
but were unable to apprehend the suspects.
At the family s home yesterday, Jackman said
she always worried about Boatswain whenever he
he was my pet. He was all I had," Jackman cried.
Prime Minister Kamla Persad-Bissessar has
promised that long awaited constitutional reform
will take root early next year. In fact, she said
T&T would have a new Constitution in early 2014.
"I am sure the nation would be pleased that we
would have a new Constitution to show very early
in the new year. It has taken time, but I would
prefer to deliver reforms born out of the desires
and ambitions of the people, so that those reforms
will last," she said in an exclusive interview with
the Sunday Guardian.
Constitutional reform has been a hot-button
topic on political platforms and even among long-
standing politicians, as both Opposition Leader Dr
Keith Rowley and former prime minister Basdeo
Panday have called for the reform.
The responsibility for constitutional reform has
been handed over to Congress of the People Leader
Prakash Ramadhar in his capacity as Minister of
Legal Affairs. Ramadhar has been spearheading the
national consultations to formulate the reformation
of the current Constitution.
But Persad-Bissessar has named constitutional
reform as key among her political actions for the
next year. (RS)
See full interview on Pages A6 and A7
PM promises new
Constitution for 2014
A slipshod contract signed by a previous
board tied state-owned Petrotrin to the
billion-dollar cost overruns of its Gas Opti-
misation Project (GOP).
The project, almost a decade in the mak-
ing, is finally nearing completion and is
expected to end at the end of the year. After
years of delays and missed deadlines, the
protracted project cost the state-owned
enterprises some $1.43 billion since it began
Though the current board, headed by for-
mer energy minister Lindsey Gillette and
company president Khalid Hassanali, was
before the Public Accounts (Enterprises)
Committee earlier this month to explain
the high cost overruns, the company is now
saying that they were saddled with the slip-
shod contract signed by previous boards.
In a response to questions by the Sunday
Guardian, Petrotrin said the five years of
cost overruns was due to problems with
the contracts, design and engineering short-
comings, project delays, scope growth,
increases in labour cost and lower than
"The 2004 original estimate was US$350
million, by Petrotrin, (and) was a preliminary
estimate at the conceptual stage of the proj-
ect," the company said.
By November 2005 an international con-
tractor (name called) was brought in and
that estimate shot to US$650 million," based
on different definition and development
stages of the project with no detailed engi-
neering being done except for the Isomeri-
sation Complex," the company said.
It was bumped up again by the mid-2006
lump-sum bids received for the CC (con-
tinuous catalyst regeneration) Complex,
Alkylation and Acid Units and FCCU (fluid
catalytic cracking unit) Phase II Upgrade.
"In October 2006 the budget was revised
at an estimated US$850 million and the
award of major contracts, the schedule for
mechanical completion was extended to
January 2009. In June 2008 the project
budget was increased to US$1.3 billion, and
the time for mechanical completion was
further extended to November 2009 as a
result of the continued unprecedented esca-
lation of market increase in material prices
and fuel, project delays, scope growth,
increases in labour cost and lower than
expected productivity," the company said.
"The budget was maintained until June
2010 at which time the schedule for
mechanical completion was February 2011,"
But by June 2010 a risk-adjusted budget
of US$1.48 billion was developed, taking
into account all pending change orders, con-
tractors claims for schedule delays and costs
associated with risks for completing the
remaining portions of the project. The com-
ing on stream of the Acid/Alkylation Unit
in December 2013 marked the completion
of this project at a total cost of US$1.43 bil-
"It is important to note, however, that
this project was initiated by the previous
administration and by the time the board
changed in 2010, elements of the GOP were
already suffering from massive cost esca-
lations and schedule slippages as a result
of ill-advised contracting strategies," the
"When a post mortem was done, the pri-
mary lesson learnt is that the EPC (engi-
neering, procurement, and construction)
cost reimbursable---hybrid contract model---
is not always the best choice. The exercise
also revealed enormous variations, errors
in design and the international company s
actual contract limited actions that could
be taken by Petrotrin," the company noted.
"We are currently faced with diminishing
returns from our domestic market---freight
costs, pricing etc. Over the next few years,
we will have to work at reduced capacity
to ensure that we do not operate at a loss,"
Despite the massive overruns, Petrotrin
is still the country s largest producer of oil
and operator of the sole petroleum refinery
contributing over $7.6 billion to the treas-
Shaw gives Santa a kiss
yesterday during Santa at
the Falls West Mall
looking on, at right, is her
brother Carlos eight and
Kayden Ramsaroop three.
PHOTO: SHIRLEY BAHADUR
Petrotrin's billions in cost overruns on Gas Optimisation Project...
New board says it's saddled
with sloppy contract
KISS FOR SANTA
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