The growing anti-democratic culture and destructive politics must come to an end
It is no secret Freddie Kissoon is one of the government’s fiercest critics and trains most of his public critiques in this regard.
In democratic societies these views will be allowed to exit alongside others. In anti-democratic Guyana there is a growing intolerance for anyone who dares to question, challenge and think outside the box.
As such the cowardly and physical attack on his person while rightfully condemned by several individuals and institutions has to be addressed and dealt with within the growing social degeneracy and political intolerance to human rights and the rule of law that has seen this country reaching its nadir.
Kissoon wears many public hats. He is a newspaper columnist, academic and the Vice Chairman of the University of Guyana Workers Union and has been able to marry his roles in his analyses of society.
The fact that he places a greater responsibility at the door of the Government for doing a better job is consistent with the universal responsibility of every government.
Regrettably it is being interpreted by this Government and its cohorts as being anti-PPP rather than a citizen’s civic responsibility to hold government accountable.
The nation continues to witness individuals, including the Head of State, engaging in behaviour that is developing a growing intolerance for evidence, accountability, the rule of law, equal rights and justice.
There is also information in the public domain of Kissoon being singled out for verbal attacks by President Jadgeo and his men. This growing anti-democratic culture and destructive politics that continue to play out in this society must come to an end.
A failure to stand up for what is right is to encourage the lawless to repeat their activities as was conducted against Ronald Waddell that ultimately saw his demise at the hands of hired gunmen and to date no one brought to justice.
The attacks on the rights of some citizens, be it the right to freedom of expression, association, collective bargaining, participation in national decision-making, economic equality and justice are increasing with each passing day and the time is nigh for every law-abiding Guyanese to stand up and be his/her brother’s keeper. For we are reminded of the words of Pastor Martin Niemölleris who said, “In Germany they first came for the Communists, and I didn’t speak up because I wasn’t a Communist. Then they came for the Jews, and I didn’t speak up because I wasn’t a Jew. Then they came for the trade unionists, and I didn’t speak up because I wasn’t a trade unionist. Then they came for the Catholics, and I didn’t speak up because I was a Protestant. Then they came for me — and by that time no one was left to speak up.”
Usually it is government by virtue of its role that gives leadership to society through its policies, behaviours and laws. It is time for us to collectively tell this Government to lead by example and buckle down to creating the society where we can all peacefully co-exist, by stopping its acts of aggression, violence and injustices against the people.