When the Guyana Human Rights Association (GHRA) comes out blazing in (SN, 4-23-12, “GHRA keeping eye on Ramnarine case, points Brummell to policing standards”) it unreservedly supports the indiscipline of Police Assistant Commissioner Mr. David Ramnarine, which weakens the police force. This can only result in a breakdown of law and order, as much as it further damages GHRA’s credibility.
What’s GHRA’s motive? It’s certainly not a human rights issue. Does its mission now involve undermining discipline to create nationwide chaos? Why its silence on crime, AIDS prevention, women and children’s’ rights? When the same GHRA’s apathy records its selective silence on the presence of Venezuelan troops at Guyana’s borders, it speaks volumes of its callousness, insincerity and frivolity with a situation likely to invite insufferable human tragedy for all Guyanese.
Such GHRA blatant, selective preoccupation with only the political objectives of the opposition cannot exonerate them of prejudice and guilt, especially in our plural society. The fact that Home Affairs Minister Mr. Clement Rohee has openly admitted that he neither ordered nor approved any instructions for the Police Force to solicit money to feed its staff during the November 2011 elections is revealing. One can understand the righteous indignation of the Home Affairs Minister when he emphasizes that he secured a $90 million budget for the police during the 2011 elections. All this now brings into question the objectives for such original procurement and allocation. Do the police normally get free meals during non-election time for them to be entitled to such meals as a routine during Election Day? Same police work, only a different day. Wouldn’t such a tradition also entitle all, – yes all – nationwide Government employees to free meals?
APNU’s Mr. David Granger could have secured significant brownie points and more so upstaged Minister Rohee by publicly revealing the availability of the $90 million. Now Mr. Granger’s non-revelation highlights his lack of knowledge of Guyana’s budget process, especially since such funding was already approved by Parliament. Mr. Granger’s negligence only facilitated Home Affairs Minister Rohee’s clarification for him to get credit.
Such APNU incompetence damages any hope they will provide a substantially better, alternative government. Whether APNU’S shadow Finance Minister Mr. Carl Greenidge was unable to teach him a lesson by any briefing lends creditability to the growing rift and friction between the two.
Nevertheless, the humbug with timely distribution of the budgeted money for the police requires investigation and correction. Obviously Mr. Ramnarine can be credited with much bravery in defending his integrity publicly. But Mr. Ramnarine originally claimed he never received any money; when a cheque was produced that was issued to him he recanted his previous denial.
As a seasoned senior police officer Mr. Ramnarine was empowered to complain directly to his superiors in the first place. Contrary to the rules, he chose to go public disregarding police departmental procedures and his pledge to maintain discipline. He could have handled the problem a lot better.
All Guyanese have the right of freedom of speech. But it is not absolute, especially when one is a member of the disciplined forces. Any staff member who publicly challenges his department head in the press – anywhere in the world- both in the private and public sector, would automatically be disciplined for insubordination.
While the GHRA reminds us that “-police officials shall at all times fulfill the duty imposed on them by law to serve and protect the community and its members against illegal acts” it must urgently explain and provide any evidence for this innuendo i.e., what, if any, illegal acts were committed by Home Affairs Minister Rohee (or Mr. Ramnarine) whose joint responsibility it is to maintain the law and public order.
No such illegalities can be tolerated, especially by those in charge of Guyana’s security and wellbeing. GHRA’s haste to endorse and fortify Mr. Ramnarine’s indiscipline can only be viewed as deplorable – a glaring attempt to foment mischief as part of their historical Afrocentric biases and agenda. It was the same GHRA which ridicuously attributed Guyana’s existence to slaves carving it out of the Atlantic Ocean, subjecting the body to ridicule and disrespect.
Where native Guyanese Amerindians actually lived before Guyana’s alleged creation is a mystery that GHRA is still unable to address. Nevertheless, GHRA can only be right that “-police officials shall not commit any acts of corruption themselves and should rigorously oppose such acts by others”.
So when Mr. Ramnarine says he never received any money, but later changed his position, GHRA could not be seriously advocating charges against their hero for attempted corruption. Would this be fruitful and necessary?
It’s all a simple misunderstanding. More like a lack of communication, with some wickedly trying to fan conflict between Minister Rohee, Mr. Ramnarine and others. Any reprimanding of a subordinate by the Commissioner of Police would be understandable and appropriate; even as Minister Rohee’s attempt to discipline a subordinate thru the press has been unwise.
If the Police Commissioner does not act decisively, he risks a snowball breakdown of discipline among his ranks. In which case the Commissioner will incur blame for failure to arrest any looming breakdown within the law enforcement institution which he commands.
It’s better to fix any engine problems so the police car does not run off the road. Crocodile tears like those which are currently being shed would flow in torrents if the vehicle ends up in a trench with juicy rumps to feast on. Already GHRA is in the trench sharpening its teeth.
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