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Oct 26, 2016

Prime Minister Previously Showed Support for Oil Moratorium, Referendum

Dean Barrow

Today, the environmentalists also showed us a video package of separate interviews granted to the media in February of 2012 and May of 2015, in which no less than Prime Minister Dean Barrow himself appeared to support both the idea of a moratorium and plans for a referendum on offshore oil exploration. Tonight, we recap what the Prime Minister said.

 

Prime Minister Dean Barrow

“There is a moratorium on offshore exploration. In fact, I’ve been talking to OCEANA; I’ve met with Ms Chanona. She’s actually going to propose some language that could find its way into some sort of a formal document and I am perfectly happy to take that to Cabinet. What I will not do, is to say that there is a proscription that forever and ever, there can and will be no offshore exploration. But I am prepared to, as I said, put in writing that there is a moratorium and that that moratorium will only be lifted if conditions are right. That is the position.”

 

Reporter

“You did promise though, a referendum, have you reneged on that?”

 

Prime Minister Dean Barrow

“I promised a referendum?”

 

Reporter

“…on offshore, on whether we should proceed with offshore, you did say that…”

 

Prime Minister Dean Barrow

“I did?”

 

Reporter

“Yes, it was last election.”

 

Reporter

“It was pre-election.”

 

Prime Minister Dean Barrow

“I did?”

 

Reporter

“You can check your archives…”

 

Prime Minister Dean Barrow

“…Because this politics is a young man’s game, you know. I’m not…”

 

Reporter

“It was an interview with me at your home, maybe that’s why….”

 

Prime Minister Dean Barrow

“I was too comfortable. The least that the government can do is to give these people their referendum. Actually, would be prepared to support the government sponsoring the referendum to be held at an ample time. But why would there be a need for referendum now if the thing is subject to a moratorium and if I am prepared to enter into an agreement that would say that, that moratorium could only be lifted at certain circumstances. If thereafter people still want a referendum, like we wah, I don’t know.”

 

Reporter

“…Cause thirty thousand people came out…”

 

Prime Minister Dean Barrow

“Looks like we have to spend a lot of PetroCaribe money in addition to debt buyback on referendums.”

 

Reporter

“It’s a democracy.”

 

Prime Minister Dean Barrow

“Well let me not say no to that, but I believe that might be overtaken by events if we manage to sign this agreement.”

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Viewers please note: This Internet newscast is a verbatim transcript of our evening television newscast. Where speakers use Kriol, we attempt to faithfully reproduce the quotes using a standard spelling system.

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