New rules to govern BPL board

Bahamas Power and Light Headquarters on Baillou Hill Road.

New rules governing BPL board operations will keep members accountable and on track.  That, according to the chairman of the recently appointed BPL board, Dr. Donovan Moxey.  The board held its first meeting on Monday, with chairman Moxey noting that the clearly defined structure will be the new order of the day.

“One of the things we spoke about in our meetings today was corporate governance,” he told members of the news media during a press conference.  “So, that is one of the things we are working on right now to put in place a corporate governance structure which clearly outlines in black and white what rules will govern the board,” he said.

“We will also look at what is being done from a best practices perspective; looking at other quasi governing agencies as well as other regional players that do the same thing we do with respect to utilities.”

The company’s new chairman confirmed that the first matter on the table is reviewing the Request For Proposal (RFP) submitted by Shell North America.

The international company submitted its petition to assist with power generation at the flailing electrical company and subsequently emerged as the preferred vendor.  However, the Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) has not yet been signed.

“No MoU has been signed yet, but we are currently learning all of the elements of that agreement and we are making sure that we learn enough so that when the decision is made to go forward with the signing, it is done with the best interest of Bahamians,” shared Dr. Moxey.

He said if all goes well with accepting Shell North America to assist with power generation at BPL, it could possibly usher the electrical company into a new era of efficiency.

“Obviously, those proposals which came in focused on new fuels sources, primarily Liquefied Natural Gas (LNG) which is less expensive. So, our perspective as a board is focused on giving Bahamians solutions that will give stable, cost-effective electricity coupled with the highest level of service,” noted Dr. Moxey.

Dr. Moxey said it is also important for the board of directors to have an open-door policy with union leaders to ensure that communication is maintained between BPL executives, its board of directors, managers and employees.

“One of the things that we communicated to unions is that the lines of communication with the board are always open,” he shared.

“We want to find common ground with respect to the needs of the union and what the role of executive management is as well and discerning what is our mandate at BPL for the Bahamian people.

“We want to ensure that these lines of communication are established where they can feel comfortable coming to us with their grievances. From our perspective, we don’t want to set up an adversarial perspective and they understand that.”