The only reason why I haven’t repeated the exact line in my 2010 column for which then President Bharat Jagdeo sued me for libel and requested and got an injunction, is my respect for the rule of law. As an opinion-maker, no matter how much the rule of law takes a beating, one cannot dismiss the rule of law because chaos will follow. An injunction may be odiously wrong, but if the court granted it, then it must be observed while trying to get another judge to set it aside.
I had referred to President Jagdeo as an ideological racist. This was after painstaking research that led to a seventy page thesis on the racist state machinery Jagdeo controlled for twelve years. My research documents the meticulous denial of rights, opportunities, employment, scholarships, contracts, promotions against African-Guyanese. In two public sector areas- Customs and Excise and the Ministry of Foreign Affairs – the violations were downright nauseating. Now that he has been toppled by the 2015 election results, there should be an investigation into the practice of racism during the 12 year tenure of this man.
He sued, making him one of two Heads of Government in the history of the Caribbean that ever sued a columnist for a political/academic statement, a statement that had nothing to do with the normal vilification of people’s personal life. I never said Jagdeo was a homosexual, a thief, a corrupter of youth, a sexual offender, a murderer, a violent man that beats people etc. I never went anywhere near that direction. Based on my research, I came to the conclusion that Jagdeo’s racist temperament was ideologically determined. I explained to the court what I meant by ideological racism. It is a valid scholarly concept.
The case is in the courts and one would have expected Jagdeo to stay clear of any statement accusing others of racism. You sue a columnist for calling you racist when you were president, then how can you call the ruling president of Guyana in 2016 a racist. This is exactly what Jagdeo did in New York earlier this year. The decency of David Granger spared Jagdeo a court case.
One must not forget that Jagdeo ignores the libel suit in progress and spouts his accusations of racism incessantly. During the 2015 election campaign, he told his constituencies that if the PNC wins the elections, people will have their houses invaded, and would be beaten, raped and robbed. Amazingly, Jagdeo was not charged for criminal, racial incitement. Jagdeo as President ordered that Oliver Hickson be prosecuted for a statement far less sickening that what he uttered. This is the nature of the man who wants to be President for a third term
Now Jagdeo is at it again. On Saturday, addressing his emotionally wild supporters in Essequibo that reminds you of the misguided fanatical supporters of Donald Trump, he told his party members that there is ethnic cleansing in Guyana. You can use any grammatical interpretation you want, but that statement means that David Granger is either practicing, supporting or encouraging ethnic cleansing. He is the President of the country; his government cannot be involved in racist policies and he does not know. One is absolutely sure that again Jagdeo will not be prosecuted and he will not be sued for libel by President Granger.
Are Bharrat Jagdeo and the people he inherited from Cheddi Jagan’s era and those new apparatchiks he has around him since 2001 bigoted? If the answer is no, then what happened to 500 Black youths and adolescents that were killed by extra- judicial gangs, including legitimate members of the security forces acting under orders from Roger Khan and company? Do Black lives matter for Jagdeo? The answer is no and it has to be known, because it was under his presidency these 500 persons were killed and there wasn’t even an inquiry into one of the deaths.
Having presided over Guyana during this mayhem, Jagdeo shows no remorse or redeemable attitude; on the contrary, he believes that Indians should be careful because the PNC is in power in Guyana. They have to be careful, because Jagdeo is still to recant his prediction that once the PNC wins in 2015, Indians would be violently attacked. No withdrawal of the statement means Jagdeo still believes it. If he didn’t believe it, then why would he announce to his party congress that there is ethnic cleansing in 2016 by the Guyana Government. A man who for whom Black lives don’t matter continues to be crassly insensitive to Guyana’s most sensitive issue – race incitement.
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