Ronald Bulkan wrote that he has been transfixed at the transmogrification of a number of Indian Guyanese who just months ago found the PPP regime to be characterized by cascading incompetence, corruptibility, unpleasant functionalism and other unacceptable motifs.
Bulkan listed a few– Ralph Seeram, Shaun Samaroo, Peter Ramsaroop, Asgar Ally, the ousted PPP mandarin from years back and Leon Suseran. These names are in the same category with people like Dolly Hassan, Immigration Lawyer in Richmond Hill. They have been joined by some huge surprises. The line-up includes Hindu priest, Aksharanandan who stayed away from politics for a long time; literary figure, Ryhaan Shah; Varshnie Singh, former common law wife of Bharrat Jagdeo, and the good friend of Eusi Kwayana who is in advanced age and lives in the United States, P.D. Sharma
The sudden transformation of these people is no puzzle at all. Once Bulkan had looked hard enough he would have seen the philosophical foundation for the attitudinal departure – election time and the strong likelihood that Indian rule would end.
There have been millions of statements throughout the past sixty years in Guyana that Africans and Indians appreciate each other, see the kindness in each other, desire the continuation in the warmth of the relationships but at election time, ontology takes over.
Since elections are racial competition for the administration of Guyana, racial instincts take over and Guyanese vote for politicians who belong to the same ethnicity they do. A break with this tradition first came in the 2006 elections when substantial numbers of African Guyanese defected from the PNC edifice and voted for the overtly multi-racial Alliance For Change.
The Indians did emulate their African counterparts in 2011 and gave Moses Nagamootoo a vote of confidence but the numbers were much smaller than what the African Guyanese gave the AFC in 2006 and the emulation was confined to Berbice with input from middle class urban Indians in Region Four.
The May 11 elections will decide whether the Guyanese nation, particularly Indians, have finally accepted that the PPP is not synonymous with the Indian race in Guyana. But there will always be an Indian mind-set whose ontological make-up prevents them from accepting African leadership and control of the state in Guyana.
What is important to note is that character wise, these are not bad people and in fact, may be decent humans who probably are not racist in the sociological sense; (though philosophically they are but that is a complexity, a discussion of which space constraint will prevent). If you look at these people’s perception of the PPP’s tenure before the prorogation of Parliament, it would include severe condemnation of some of the terrible forms of PPP’s misbehaviour. In fact, Bulkan did cite some of those condemnations and identified who made them.
Even after the announcement of the date for general elections, these folks were still irritated with the corrupt and depraved nature of many of the PPP’s monarchs. The reason for this is because they felt their criticism would not harm the PPP’s election chances because in another three-way race, the PPP will still win the presidency and the government.
Once an Indian government was in place, the Indian names cited above feel that they could take the liberty of castigating the PPP’s misbehaviour. All hell broke loose and paranoia took over after the opposition parties entered into a coalition and its image and its political capital expanded phenomenally. For the Indian names cited above, the control of the state by an Indian party was about to end and an African presidency is likely to happen.
It is important to understand that the substance of the fear is not loss of power by the PPP. All the names mentioned above couldn’t be bothered with the current PPP leadership many of whom they despise or dislike. The coalition is likely to remove an Indian party and by extension, Indian hegemony over state and society in Guyana.
The Indian personalities identified above would probably have voted for a Nagamootoo/Ramjattan ticket and dump the PPP. But a victory for the coalition is going to bring a Blackman into the presidency and other African Guyanese will have strong control over the state machinery. This Indian mind-set has an ontological aversion to Black people in control over the total governmental machinery even though there will be an AFC input into the governance of the country.
This explains the unexpected ideological embrace of the PPP. I hope this short analysis puts an ends to Bulkan’s bewilderment.
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