Another avenue for sharing propaganda and half truths
During the past weekend, Channel 21 began broadcasting in Berbice. Though not really publicised or announced before, this channel is the long rumoured National Communications Network’s (NCN) second channel in the county. Reliable reports suggested that Channel 21 would be coming on the air shortly to air local greetings, news, programmes and other locally-produced productions from the State media here in Berbice.
The other NCN Channel 15 would revert to 24 hours link with NCN Georgetown.
One could readily call this move and act by the state media a clandestine one, and one which exposes the double standard of the government of the day. To bring another state channel to this region and still deny others the rights and authority to bring other television and radio services to Berbice is a shameful and vindictive act.
The National Frequency and Management Unit (NFMU) needs to come out and address this development in Berbice. The officials of NCN need to tell Berbicians and the nation why there was a need to bring a second NCN channel on stream here, when numerous applicants are being side- lined by the NFMU to set up radio and TV relay services here.
I feel though for the existing TV stations here in Berbice. Their advertising dollar would now be further stretched short and tougher times are ahead.
But all of this is not surprising at all. Elections are just around the corner. The more avenues for sharing propaganda and half truths on the airwaves, the better it would be; this new TV station in Berbice could not have come at a better time. Berbicians – naiive Berbicians – when will you ever learn?
This is not a favour the government is doing by giving you another NCN channel to watch. It’s all part of a sinister brain-washing scheme of injecting twice the propaganda now in your heads. It’s propaganda times two; more lies. This administration has become more emboldened to protect its interests. The establishment of NCN Channel 21 in Berbice has just shown the lengths it would go to use Berbicians.
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The AFC needs to be decisive and clear in its stance leading up to the next elections
The Alliance For Change (AFC) refusal to be a part of the broader opposition alliance now being forged because it would “loose its identity and violate its core principles of breaking with the racially divisive past”, is patently hypocritical and obviously opportunistic.
How could the leadership of the AFC in good conscience take this stance and expect Guyanese to believe when the organisational structure is influenced by and panders to the same racial divide from which it wishes to claim distance? The two principal members of its primary revolving leadership come from the PPP and the PNCR and by sheer coincidence, (yeah right!) happen to be of African and Indian descent. It is structured and operationalised, some may say, undemocratically, to present a front to the people that the interests of the two primary constituencies in the country, the Africans and the Indians, will be taken care of.
Actions speak louder than words my friends…and the Guyanese people are beyond being fooled by stunts like this attempt on your part to articulate in words “a new approach” when in reality your actions only consolidate the politics of the last 50 years in the country.
However, your opportunistic instincts are blatantly obvious for all to see. You are now clear that you want no part of the alliance at this point in time. Yet you say that the door is still open to a change of heart depending on mitigating circumstances which could present themselves in the future.
The only circumstances in the future which will certainly induce a change of your heart will be if and when the alliance asserts itself as a realistic and strong force with which to be reckoned leading up to the next elections. And then all, including the AFC will want to clamber aboard the train for a free ride into the new dispensation the alliance promises to bring to the country.
It will serve you better if you exercise some intellectual honesty and argue that you believe you can take on the PPP on your own and emerge victorious from what will be a merciless and bloody war waged by the incumbents. Then and only then will you position yourself on the moral high ground from which you could come and say that you were mistaken in your initial belief and you want to be a part of the opposition alliance. It is impossible to have your cake and eat it all at the same time.
I believe that the leaders of the AFC need to engage in some serious soul searching after which they must be decisive and clear in the stance they will assume leading up to the next elections.
The very existence of the party is at stake and if they continue to vacillate they could well see their fledgling organisation go the way of those belonging to Hardy, Dev, etc…After the next elections.
A final word of counsel to the AFC is that they will not defeat the PPP on their own. If they choose to go it alone in the next elections they will be battered into submission by the election/propaganda machinery of the PPP and the historic baggage they themselves bring to the table.
Most importantly however is that they will abrogate their responsibility of seizing the historic moment which is now upon us which demands that we all unite in a national broad-based coalition to fight and vanquish the common enemy, Jagdeo and his ruthless and avaricious cabal of plunderers of the land.
Guyanese products in Toronto
I express my disappointment at the Agriculture (or Marketing?) sector of Guyana. For the last three years I have been living in Toronto and always check for Guyanese products in the supermarkets, so that I can support the local farmers. In three years I have managed to see Guyanese rice once, about 2 ½ years ago.
The West Indian/Guyanese stores usually carry a little bit of the Guyanese produce. Upon closer examination, most of them are made in Canada e.g. casareep, plantain chips, essences, etc. I have never seen any top class pepper sauce here from Guyana.
The Toronto area has a larger potential market share than Guyana itself. Yet the potential markets remain just that, potential. My guess is that there are more than one million people of Guyanese heritage who lives in and around Toronto.
Recently, I became excited, when my wife told me that at a large supermarket there was a number of Guyanese produce – golden apples, bread nut (katahar), breadfruit, bora, boulanger, plantains, etc. I could not contain myself.
I immediately left for the supermarket. Here is my disappointment: the golden apples, breadnut and breadfruit came from Jamaica. The bora came from the Dominican Republic, the Dominican Republic of all places!! The local people do not use bora there!! The plantain was from Guatemala. All of these things were labeled Guyanese!! My guess is that some trader wanted to bring these things here from Guyana but the supply was non-existent or erratic, or flights were not available to bring them out.
I stood there and shook my head. I was hoping that the Agriculture sector was changing. How stupid was I? Guyana would never change under the people we have managing it. Is it so difficult to explore the opportunities that abound here in Toronto?
I know it is not for a lack of production. I had a neighbour who wanted to export wiri-wiri pepper to Toronto while I was in Guyana. He had the supply from the Mahaica farmers. He asked me for help, since he knew I was working with the Ministry of Agriculture. I know the head of the New GMC. I arranged a meeting with them. Today, four years on, my neighbour managed one batch of exports. He could not get flights to send out his produce. Right now when you get wiri-wiri pepper it is CDN $6 to $12 a pound!!
I will be here in Toronto for the rest of my life. I am waiting to see the Guyanese produce, of high quality, that actually comes from Guyana. Start with the Guyanese rice and sugar. I also buy sugar from Jamaica. The Guyanese quality is better. But we do not get it here. Something is very wrong in Guyana.