The People’s Progressive Party/ Civic (PPP/C) government had well-known intentions to allow at least two other casinos in Guyana, both in Georgetown.
One casino was intended for the Marriott Hotel while the other was set for Sleep Inn on Church Street. In fact, Sleep Inn even secured a Memorandum of Understanding from the Donald Ramotar Administration that somewhat paved the way for the licensing.
But, with the PPP/C’s defeat at the 2015 elections, those plans were quashed. In fact, some of the slot machines secured by Sleep Inn were subsequently taken away.
Recently, news broke that tenders have been scrapped for the Marriott’s casino.
At his press conference today, Opposition Leader Bharrat Jagdeo expressed his conviction that Princess Casino has colluded with government officials to ensure that competition stays at bay.
Jagdeo said that the value of Marriott, which is wholly owned by the government of Guyana, would be substantially enhanced if a casino were to be added. However, he said that government has foregone revenue for the benefit of Princess Casino.
“We thought they would have gone ahead and pursued the plans we had before,” said Jagdeo.
He continued, “I believe that Princess casino has now succeeded in scrapping a bid and scrapping competition and these ministers and the people at the board are complicit in this. Now there is no competition when you have one operating casino to get all the benefits; this stinks in almost every area.”