It was not unusual the tongue-lashing Mr. Robert Badal got for analyzing economic trends in the hotel and tourist industries. Read what Mr. Badal says and he is virtually repeating what opposition leaders, editors, economists and commentators have been saying long before 2010.
When he did reveal some secrets, they weren’t secrets at all to some people. I mean the media. Many of us in the media knew about certain intrigues about the sale of Pegasus.
But one must give Mr. Badal courage for echoing these sentiments. Businessmen in Guyana today are more scared to whisper a criticism of the current regime than when Burnham ruled the land. How do you account for that? Many explanations can be advanced and they would not fit into a small column.
Two come easily. First, businessmen knew they had an umbrella for protection. There was the PPP, WPA, and the Catholic Church among others. With intense pressure on Burnham, business people felt that Burnham would avoid endless confrontations. Secondly, Burnham existed in an era where human rights violations were frowned upon by the people of the world.
In Guyana today, fear is pervasive. No one in the business community wants to utter a word of disapproval even if the excesses make Burnham look like a schoolboy. No violation of the fundamental values of decency brings even a whisper. Mr. Badal broke the concrete wall of trepidation and has spoken out.
What lies in store for this Guyanese investor? Will there be more insults or will sinister forces emerge to harm Mr. Badal? And if this should happen, do we stand by and allow another citizen to become victim to the iron rule of tyranny?
There is another dimension to the Badal incident that needs examination. One by one the level of frank assessment of where Guyana has gone is increasing. A year ago we didn’t know about Janet Bulkan. Then she emerged as the leading analyst looking at the fundamental flaws of LCDS.
A year ago, we didn’t know about Dr. Tarron Khemraj and Sasenarine Singh. Now they have joined Christopher Ram and Clive Thomas in their exposure of an economy that is stagnant. Bulkan, Khemraj, Singh now Badal’s public critical condemnation of a destructive autocracy in Guyana augers well for the election campaign, the reason being that their names cannot be used to tell PPP voters that it is people from the “OTHER SIDE” that do not want to see the PPP stay in government.
Long ago on this page as the moral decay, the ethical sickness, the ethnic bias, the cancerous corruptibility, the sexual adventurism, the unconscionable family tree patronage, the cussing down culture and political rut got worse with each passing moment, I predicted that decent East Indians would come out and join the line of voices wanting to change this place.
I don’t bother with the autocrats’ vile attempts to denigrate me and my family. When I became a political activist many moons ago, I know opposition status carried consequences that one had to endure.
As I keep writing, I am being proven right about my inflexible concept that the PPP Government is an extreme dictatorship that has outdone the Burnham’s regime in every conceivable department of power abuse. It simply boggles the mind to know that the entire range of opposition voices allows this political miasma to continue without protest. Adam Harris had a nice piece last Sunday that reminded me and should do the same for all Guyanese of miasma. He wondered why the tolls of the Berbice Bridge are so high.
When the Burnham Government constructed the Corentyne highway and set up a toll, the PPP leadership denounced the toll and sent its supporters to physically attack the personnel guarding the gates. In the process they killed one of the sentries. How funny today’s world is. Those who killed policemen and burnt down Guysuco’s properties in the seventies and eighties are in power today where they are constantly carping on opposition use of violence.
Readers should look at Mr. Badal pronouncements again. They should go over them with a fine tooth comb, and they will see that these are not the words of an opposition politician but a large investor who before last week never uttered a single word of condemnation against the Government.
Mr. Badal has spoken up because there isn’t more he can endure in the destruction of his country. We should admire his courage and at the same time be prepared to come to his rescue when the monsters knock on his door
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