A white elephant is about to be born in Leguan
May 30, 2017 , http://www.kaieteurnewsonline....o-be-born-in-leguan/
In an article which appeared in the news media on May 23, the Permanent Secretary of the Ministry of Business (MoB) reportedly told the Public Accounts Committee (PAC) of the National Assembly that a plantain chips factory, now under construction on the Island of Leguan will become operational by June 30. The factory is expected to initially employ a manager and 30 employees none of which have been identified for employment or are available for training and pre-trial runs before manufacturing starts in a month’s time, as was stated.
The PAC Chairman informed a team from the MoB that farmers from Leguan have been preparing their land holdings to produce plantains for the factory to keep it humming when production starts. Leguan is predominantly a subsistence rice growing region with some cattle rearing undertaken here and there. It has never produced plantains or bananas in commercial quantities and would be unable to do so in the foreseeable future because of the high cost of crop conversion and infrastructure development particularly field layout and adequate drainage and irrigation for plantain cultivation.
Further, the Island has no potable water supply, an unreliable electricity supply, a network of poor roads and a rickety stelling. Therefore, no manufacturing facility for plantain chips can operate successfully unless the necessary infrastructures are in place as well as the reliable availability and timely supplies of raw materials could be obtained at competitive prices to make the plant fully operational.
It is evident that a feasibility study was not carried out on this plantain chip factory on the Island of Leguan as any economic and financial analysis would have indicated that the project was not viable and therefore not worthy of any investment. Thus another “White Elephant” has been born in the checked development Annals of the present Administration.