I found Ravi Dev’s article in KN of Sunday, January 29th extremely distasteful. Mr. Burnham has been dead for 26 years now. Can we let his soul rest in peace? For how much longer are we going to blame Guyana’s ills on him?
The children who graduate from high school and university now and in the past decade do not know who Burnham is. All they want is a job. What is wrong with resuscitating the National Service?
If National Service were to offer skills training and gainful employment to the youth of all ethnic groups who are unemployed, it may decrease the level of crime in the country. Let Mr. Granger put forth a proposal for national discussion.
Yes, there was much wrong with the way Mr. Burnham went about the National Service, especially with the mandatory requirement that university graduates serve one year in the jungle.
Nothing positive or constructive was achieved by that madness. But let it go. Why carry over our baggage to the next generation? Who says that Mr. Granger plans to do the same? With the attitude that Mr. Dev propagates, we will never move on.
Mr. Burnham did many things wrong, but the PPP and Mr. Jagdeo learnt well from him. How is it that Mr. Dev does not focus his gaze on the most recent egregious examples of authoritarian and dictatorial behaviour?
What is so wrong about trying to develop discipline found wanting in parts of our society? Have you driven on the roads in Georgetown in the past few years? Have you seen the garbage at every single “road corner” in Georgetown? Mr. Dev, are you aware of how many children are left to their own devices because (1) mother is a security guard working 12 hour shifts, 365 days a year, for $1200 a day, (2) father is nowhere to be found, (3) both parents are “in foreign” and children are left with grandparents, aunts, uncles, cousins who just want the money that comes from “foreign”? Are you aware of how many children are in the numerous orphanages in Guyana, not because they are orphans; but because the parents cannot afford to look after them? Surely you are aware of what happened to Neesa Gopaul? You wrote an article about her. And let us not forget Sheema Mangar who was brutally run over by the driver of a car in Camp Street after said driver allegedly stole her BlackBerry. I could go on, but what I am trying to say is that our country is in free fall – and you are dwelling on Burnham’s National Service?
I am 100% Indian. Mr. Burnham did not single out Indians only for victimization. Many of his supporters had to flee Guyana for criticizing him. We have had an “Indian” government, for 20 years now.
Has that government allowed the people of Linden to have a television station of their choice, or granted radio licences to Kaieteur News or Stabroek News? How has the sugar industry improved since Mr. Burnham died?
You say that “the GNS could always be counted on to provide bodies for the ubiquitous public rallies that Burnham introduced”. What about the people the PPP and Mr. Jagdeo trucked in to his numerous rallies before elections on November 28th, 2011?
Mr. Dev, let us move on. We cannot focus on the negative. Help to make life better for our children. You can do a lot. You are a brilliant son of Guyana. Do not keep digging up the past.
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