The former Commonwealth secretary general, Sir Shridath Ramphal is urging the Guyana government to ensure that it secures all rights to its recently discovered oil sector before the decades-old standoff with Venezuela enters a new phase.
“But we have to prepare properly; we have to secure that oil. We have to get rid of the Venezuela issue, and we have to do all that, as the lawyers say, seriatim; one after the other,’ The Guyana-born Sir Shridath told the state-owned Guyana Chronicle newspaper.
The border dispute between the two countries may be heading to the International Court of Justice (ICJ) if efforts by the United Nations to broker a deal by year-end fails.
The newly-appointed United Nations Secretary General Personal Representative on the so-called Good Offices Process, Dag Halvor Nylander, a former Norwegian diplomat, is expected in Guyana next week to meet with officials on the border issue.
“By the end of the year, if it doesn’t yield satisfactory progress of a solution, then we go to the ICJ. So we can look ahead to 2018 seeing us in the court, which we hope will put an end to this evil,” said Sir Shridath, who is also an advisor to the Ministry of Foreign Affairs on the Guyana-Venezuela border controversy.”
Guyana has been seeking to consolidate its oil and energy sector after the US oil giant, ExxonMobil recently announced that it had made another significant oil discovery on the Snoek Well offshore Guyana, in the Stabroek Block.