Janette Bulkan has requested proof be given that she is guilty of writing articles filled with inaccuracies, distortions of facts; making defamatory and slanderous statements; accusing Government officials including the President of Guyana of being incompetent and involved in clandestine activities.
I hold no brief for the Government of Guyana, but I am thoroughly fed-up with Bulkan’s nonsensical and childish ranting and raving. I invite the public to examine some of the proof:
The Guyana Forestry Commission (GFC) states Barama is paying all export commissions in full compliance with the National Log Export Policy (since January 1, 2009) contrary to what Bulkan asserts in SN (January 15, 2009).
Bulkan states: “GFC has allocated recently at least one SFEP without a public auction covering forest already logged illegally” (SN, July 16, 2009). The Government has, however, publicly advertised this SFEP that is referred to; this SFEP was a lease issued to N. Sukul & Sons; it was repossessed after the untimely death of Mr. Sukul and publicly advertised.
She insists that the only way for Guyana to succeed is for a log ban to be put in place. She probably forgot the contents of a letter she wrote to a Government Minister Robert Persaud on 14-2-2007 where she states, “I would strongly urge the immediate imposition of a variable tax as recommended by the NDS”.
She continuously referred to foreign companies “raping” the forests and giving all and sundry the impression that forestry is not being done sustainably in Guyana.
This conflicts with the Government’s stated position that the forests are only being harvested at 25% of their allowable potential. Additionally, the rate of deforestation in Guyana is less that 1%. How can this be so if Bulkan’s facts are correct?
Is Bulkan trying to tell the general public that she is more knowledgeable than the experts at the International Tropical Timber Organisation (ITTO), Food and Agriculture Organisation (FAO), United Nations Development Programme (UNDP), World Wildlife Fund (WWF), Conservation International (CI), World Bank Forest Carbon Partnership Facility etc.?
If she is right then all the experts in the above bodies do not know what they are doing. How else can one explain the fact that ITTO recognises Guyana to be one of only six countries (tropical forest producing) that is doing sustainable forest management at the concession level; how else can we explain that FAO, UNDP, WWF, CI, WB FCPF are so satisfied that Guyana is on the right tract that they are prepared to contribute grant funds for further development of the forestry sector.
Bulkan has also been shell-shocked by the fact that President Jagdeo was able to successfully (and predictably) seal a most visionary deal with Norway to provide initially, US$250M over a five year period – these grants are real financial incentives that recognise good governance in the forestry sector as well as country.
Bulkan has continuously lambasted the President, Minister of Agriculture and Commissioner of Forests by saying that they are not properly managing the forest sector. The success stories pointed out above do not support her argument.
What Bulkan should in reality be doing is let the public know why the local certification initiative never succeeded under her watch as chairperson and why she never contributed anything tangible to the development of Iwokrama during her several years there.
Finally, she should explain to the Guyanese public why she never object to Suriname using a map that included Guyanese territory even though she was a lead reviewer of the document.
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