After Nigel Hughes, who is next?
My conceptualizations of people, places, events and things are graphically told in black and white; in other words they are in print. No one can say that I was the last to say this or that. No one can accuse me of evading comment on this and that. You can find my attitude on a mountain of subjects stretching back to 1988 when I became a columnist with the Stabroek News because they are in the hard copies of the newspapers and on the internet.
Looking back over the decades, so many persons of straw, opportunistic mischief-makers, depraved characters, political charlatans, civil society hypocrites, betrayers of the Guyanese people, fake crusaders of human rights, artificial fighters for the poor and powerless and unsuitable human beings I have described, and have been the first to do so. Over the decades when I look back, I see how right I was back then, but I don’t beat my drum. I don’t shout it from the rooftops, I don’t demand acknowledgement.
I never once penned a line stating that I single-handedly stopped the false polls on Guyana by Vishnu Bisram. No one saw through Bisram. And even when I first exposed him, Stabroek News continued with him and most of all, the newspaper I write for, KN, continued to give him space.
Eventually, both papers stopped because I wasn’t stopping in writing about the fictional polls of Bisram. Today there are no longer the Bisram surveys that tell us how popular the PPP is.
I was the only person that took on Joey Jagan. His miasma over Channel 6 was overbearing but none of us wanted to publicly ridicule or dismiss him as a dangerous perambulator. Eventually I was proven right. Jagan crawled back into the PPP, campaigned for them during the 2011 election campaign and in the process said the nastiest things about the opposition.
And now the name Khurshid Sattaur of the Guyana Revenue Authority comes to mind. I remain the only commentator that wrote incessantly about his politically-driven decisions. No one wanted to even mention a line about his politics. Sattaur sought revenge on me. He demanded to know how much KN was paying for my columns. Not one citizen of this land sought an explanation from Sattaur as to why he would want to single me out after I went public in writing about what he did. Sattaur then followed up his anger against me by demanding I fill in eight property tax forms. I went public with that again.
My point was why me and not the thousands of other public sector workers. Not one citizen sought to ask Sattaur if he was doing his professional work or trying to get at Freddie Kissoon.
The Alliance for Change has now issued a statement on Sattaur over the GRA’s singling out of Nigel Hughes for special attention. It was bound to happen. But two questions we must ask ourselves. Are we going to remain silent over what has happened to Nigel Hughes and after Nigel Hughes? Who is next?
I return to my comments that could easily be found. I was the first person that wrote after the elections that the PPP Government will not recognize the majority Parliament and will not democratize.
I was the first person to reject the usefulness of the tripartite talks. I had vociferous arguments with Gerhard Ramsaroop over the AFC’s participation in the tripartite talks. He is a witness to that. Gerhard would reply that talking to the government is one of several ways of struggling. But I thought and still do that it was a waste of time. It is interesting now to see how the AFC is going to approach the resumption of the tripartite engagement after what has happened to Nigel Hughes.
The attention being paid to Nigel Hughes should not surprise any citizen for two reasons. One was the bitterness demonstrated for Mr. Hughes by then President Jagdeo. Jagdeo said during the election campaign that under his government and a Ramotar administration, Mr. Hughes will not receive the award of Senior Counsel. Secondly, it is no exaggeration to say that Mr. Hughes has become one of, if not the most influential opposition activists in Guyana.
Everywhere the attack on human rights occurs, Hughes is there. He was the force behind the Henry Greene exposure. He literally tore the Government apart in my libel trial. He was the lead lawyer for the treason accused and he got them off. He has helped to shape reaction to the murder of the Linden martyrs after they were killed on July 18. Nigel Hughes is the person that the PPP fears the most. Are we seeing the power of Jagdeo again? Should Guyana remain silent?