In an opinion issued through Malika Ramsey, the following words were made in the name of Joe Harmon; “It is the people who elected the Coalition Government and it is the people who decide whether or not that government is performing –not one or two newspaper columnists…”
Did Joe Harmon mean me when that emanation came through Ramsey?
I did two columns on Joe; “Has power destroyed Joe Harmon” (Friday, April 8) and “Joe Harmon and my wife; the AFC and my country,” (Sunday, April 10). There isn’t even a word much less a line or a paragraph on the issue of corruptibility in those two pieces. There is no note by me as a columnist that attributes corruptibility to Joe Harmon.
In the mood Harmon is and the methodology he operates with, he doesn’t speak in public on political dimensions in which he is in the centre, so I assume he will not publicly state if he was referring to me when he alluded to “one or two newspaper columnists.”
If Joe had me in mind when Ramsey transmitted his words, then I should jog his memory. Ordel Glasgow works in Joe’s constituency office at Pouderoyen. She is a friend of mine. I contacted Ordel the very day that Joe was quoted as saying that he will not apologize for his attitude on the salary increase. For two days, Ordel, who knows Joe well, and I, were trying to get to him to discuss the strategy of an apology. I knew his two cell numbers and his home line. He failed to respond.
I then contacted Mark Archer, whom I know well, to convey what I had imparted to Ordel. Mark said he would get in touch with Joe to convey my need to see him. I never received the courtesy of a Joe Harmon call. I cynically referred to that in my last Sunday column, a cynicism I will stand by, because I know if my call was made before Joe became the second most powerful man in government he would have responded.
I asked the question in my Friday column: if power has destroyed Joe Harmon. State power destroys most human beings who bring it into their lives. I am not saying there aren’t exceptions. The history book shows there are. Mandela comes to mind. Gorbachev is there. A former Uruguayan president is there. A former Swedish Prime Minister is included. The exceptions are very few.
Throughout my studies of history and philosophy, I have become fascinated with the subject of power. If you study philosophy and history, you fall victim to that obsession, the reason being that power holds the key to understanding the meaning of history (if history has meaning at all – a question my former history professor at UG, Sister Mary Noel Menezes answered; she believes it hasn’t).
No matter how you love, not like but love the Coalition Government, its style of using power is undermining the optimism of the people of Guyana. The examples are horrible and discouraging, of which I will not describe at this time, because this time is not the right time. Some of these examples involved Joe. That is why I want to know if he was referring to me when he spoke of newspaper columnists. Two of those examples, I thought, were misplaced thinking by Joe.
I did not write on them, because I have a responsibility not to create divisions within the Coalition Government that would weaken it. Had I said what should have been said, I honestly think a rift would have ensued in the Government, because the public and political observers would have picked up on it If Joe Harmon should call me (the way it appears he called Tiwarie in the past few months), I would tell him that his strategies are arid and ordinary, and they are disappointing countless numbers of supporters. For all we know, this Coalition may have already lost voters in 2020.
First, his silence is incredible. Who are his advisors? Does he take advice from them if and when they tender it? Didn’t Joe Harmon learn from the first imbroglio when he took six weeks to do what should have been done in one day to save his image – apologize for the “no apology to make” statement. Secondly, why attack the press that was so exposing of the PPP venalities that it raised Guyanese consciousness and that has a direct bearing on Joe Harmon coming to power.
Thirdly, is he happy with third parties speaking for him (Amna Ally, Malika Ramsey)? Fourthly, did he know beforehand about the picket outside Kaieteur News?
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