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Territory has to honour Biwater contract- Hon. Vanterpool

- Says Government will do all it can to ensure the contractual obligations of Biwater are met
Minister for Communications and Works Hon. Mark Vanterpool says the Territory has an obligation to honour the controversial Biwater contract and that Government has been working closely with Biwater to assist them to reach their contractual obligations. Photo: VINO/File
Minister for Communications and Works Hon. Mark Vanterpool (right), speaking at the contract signing between Government and Sage Utilities Holdings Limited for the 6-month management of the Baugher’s Bay Desalination Plant on November 29, 2012 said Government has been meeting regularly with Biwater and is doing all it can to assist the company to fulfil its obligations of supplying water to the Territory. Also in picture is Premier Dr. the Honourable D. Orlando Smith. Photo: VINO/File
Minister for Communications and Works Hon. Mark Vanterpool (right), speaking at the contract signing between Government and Sage Utilities Holdings Limited for the 6-month management of the Baugher’s Bay Desalination Plant on November 29, 2012 said Government has been meeting regularly with Biwater and is doing all it can to assist the company to fulfil its obligations of supplying water to the Territory. Also in picture is Premier Dr. the Honourable D. Orlando Smith. Photo: VINO/File
ROAD TOWN, Tortola, VI- Minister for Communications and Works Hon. Mark Vanterpool says the Territory has an obligation to honour the controversial Biwater contract and that Government has been working closely with Biwater officials to assist them to reach their contractual obligations.

This announcement is in contrast to assertions by former Minister for Communications and Works Hon. Julian Fraser, RA who had accused the National Democratic Party (NDP) Government of pretending as though the “Agreement and Biwater do not exist”.

“The confusion surrounding this whole Biwater Agreement lies at the feet of this NDP administration which continues to pretend that the Agreement and Biwater does not exist.  This disregard for the Terms of the Agreement was highlighted in the HOA when the Minister (Hon. Mark Vanterpool) told the House that his Ministry had done no expert verification of the drawings and specifications for compliance with both the American Water Works Association, and the American Society for Testing and Materials standards as required by the Agreement.  And neither did they issue any certificates of completion, nor do they make regular construction inspections, as required,” Hon. Fraser had told Virgin Islands News Online in October.

The Third District Representative, known as the Liberator, concluded that most importantly, the Ministry of Communications and Works has elected to fire the Biwater Project Coordinator, a person who sat at the negotiations table with Biwater on the Agreement, and knew the terms of the Agreement inside out, and also knew the obligations of government with intimacy, and would most definitely have known when and if negotiations were to kick in. 

“The Ministry even undertook to remove the technical expert appointed as Employer's Representative and replace them with the Permanent Secretary, who made no secret of their lack of familiarity with the project,” Hon. Fraser stated.

But Minister for Communications and Works Hon. Mark Vanterpool, speaking at the contract signing between Government and Sage Utilities Holdings Limited for the 6-month management of the Baugher’s Bay Desalination Plant on November 29, 2012 said Government has been meeting regularly with Biwater and is doing all it can to assist the company to fulfil its obligations of supplying water to the Territory.

He also said that when the 6-month contract with Sage Utilities Holdings Limited is up Biwater is expected to take over with the supply of water to the Territory.

“The Territory has to honour that contract…,” Minister Vanterpool said of Biwater.

He noted that Biwater was expected to provide water by November 2012, however, this has not happened because of the well known issue of Biwater having to change their plans for water supply to their plant from wells to the ocean.

“We are in the process of assisting them in their request for taking water from one of two options- taking water from the Paraquita Bay area or the Brandy Wine Bay area. These are discussions we are having. There are a number of things happening in terms of granting them Seabed Leases and so on. We are working very hard and as quickly as possible to accommodate that. It has to go through the process of planning which they have been working very hard at and we as a government will do everything we can to accommodate that and in the right way,” Hon. Vanterpool stated.

The Minister also said Biwater was informed of the interim measure Government has taken to ensure an improved water service to the Territory.

Hon. Vanterpool also assured that Biwater was doing its best to deliver on its contract despite the challenges and he too hopes that it would soon be able to do so.

Meanwhile, it was announced in the House of Assembly on October 9, 2012 that the Biwater Project had already seen some $25M invested in the construction phase.

19 Responses to “Territory has to honour Biwater contract- Hon. Vanterpool”

  • dead man (03/12/2012, 08:31) Like (0) Dislike (0) Reply
    Tis time Mark wake up from listening to those radicals from the investment club!
  • jack be still (03/12/2012, 08:51) Like (0) Dislike (0) Reply
    So happy to read that the Government allows good sense to prevail and continue wid biwater…
    • -------------- (03/12/2012, 09:35) Like (0) Dislike (0) Reply
      NDP campaigned that they will end this project/contract now they changed their tune!! Never me again voting
    • @ jack be still (03/12/2012, 11:54) Like (0) Dislike (0) Reply
      you have a interest in this matter dont you ? eh
      • hard work (04/12/2012, 07:37) Like (0) Dislike (0) Reply
        This is the best thing to happen to the BVI
        • libertor 2 (04/12/2012, 14:19) Like (0) Dislike (0) Reply
          Hopefully in time to come all the nay sayers will come to understand what Julian Fraser was all about and learn what unselfish sacrifice and determination is all about when he decided to go with biwater!!!!.
  • ooooo (03/12/2012, 10:18) Like (0) Dislike (0) Reply
    he partener them craw full now with that hefty deal that they got last week
  • my my (03/12/2012, 11:40) Like (0) Dislike (0) Reply
    NDP better toe the line on Biwater or else!!!!!
  • post no bills (04/12/2012, 07:31) Like (0) Dislike (0) Reply
    Naysayers need not post!

  • power play (08/12/2012, 10:53) Like (1) Dislike (0) Reply
    the NDP will soon face the consequences of your abuse of power...

  • fred (09/12/2012, 14:57) Like (0) Dislike (0) Reply
    we can clearly see now who is on the side of the people or not.


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