An examination of the role that China plays in several nations around the world, particularly in African countries, has proved that the superpower’s intention is not to make other countries better.
The real aim is to grease the hands of politicians in the target countries. China does this to secure a free pass to do what it wants in those countries. Research shows that China often passes off its bribe in a form of an investment, a loan or a grant, where politicians can siphon off their share.
Guyana has been witnessing China getting its way through some of the companies it has here. While the situation locally does not seem to be at the stage that it is in countries like Zimbabwe, it is important that Guyanese keep watch.
The people of African countries have borne the brunt of the consequences that comes from China’s “help.” In many cases, after China’s assistance is offered huge amounts of natural resources are taken from the countries. China benefits way more.
The superpower knows how to wiggle its way into politicians who are often the gate keepers of a country’s resources.
Research shows that most African countries have a similar story to tell about their relationship with China. Perhaps one of the countries that have felt the brunt of it all is Zimbabwe.
Under the rule of Robert Mugabe, Zimbabwe has felt the pressure of China.
Daily Mail reported that Mugabe travels regularly to Beijing as a high-ranking guest and rants at ‘small dots’ such as Britain and America. Read more: http://www.dailymail.co.uk/news/article-1036105/How-Chinas-taking-Africa-West-VERY-worried.html#ixzz4ssnrfdjv.
Mugabe has a 25-bedroom, pagoda-style mansion built by the Chinese. Daily Mail said that much of his estimated £1billion fortune is believed to have been siphoned off from Chinese ‘loans’.
In 2008 alone “Mugabe received £200 million from China, enabling him to buy loyalty from the army.”
One veteran diplomat was quoted in international media saying: ‘China is easier to do business with because it doesn’t care about human rights in Africa – just as it doesn’t care about them in its own country. All the Chinese care about is money.’
It has been reported that African leaders are happy to do business with China for a straightforward reason: cash.
With western loans linked to an insistence on democratic reforms and the need for ‘transparency’ in using the money (diplomatic language for rules to ensure dictators do not pocket millions), the Chinese have proved much more
relaxed about what their billions are used for.
Daily Mail said that little of the billions reaches the continent’s impoverished 800 million people. Much of it goes straight into the pockets of dictators. In Africa, corruption is a multi-billion pound industry and many experts believe that China is fuelling the cancer.
There have been widespread suspicions that the situation with China and Guyana is not much different.
Just a few years ago, Minister of State Joseph Harmon, who was then but an opposition Member of Parliament announced his suspicions that China was bribing the People’s Progressive Party/ Civic (PPP/C) government.
He said, “The government is silent about this immoral and abusive act and there can only be one logical conclusion for that—they are benefitting financially in exchange for allowing the rape to continue.
“Citizens need to understand the corrupt beast that it (Govt.) is dealing with. It is only a win-win deal for the parties involved and BaiShanLin’s kickbacks seem to have silenced the government.”
BaiShanlin is owned by the Government of China and private citizens of the country.
After seeing the aerial view pictures of huge piles of hundreds of Guyana’s precious logs stocked and waiting to be shipped from one of Bai Shan Lin’s Kwakwani areas, Harmon said that the evidence was simply “horrendous.”
”It is sickening to come to grips with the reality that former President Bharrat Jagdeo invited Bai Shan Lin to this country under the pretext that it was going to foster good developments, and all along the true intention was to rape this country of its resources. This underscores the need for the Ramotar administration to resign en bloc.
”They have no interest in protecting the people. They have fooled this country. It seems that this Government is being paid to shut its mouth.” Read more at: https://www.kaieteurnewsonline.com/2014/08/13/bai-shan-lins-kickbacks-seem-to-have-silenced-govt-mp-harmon/.
However, just a few years later, suspicions increased that China was indeed bribing the government of Guyana but, by this time, it was not longer the PPP?C government. This time it was the APNU+AFC government. And the person caught in the middle of it was Harmon.
A photograph surfaced with Harmon on a private jet with officials of BaiShanLin, the very company which he said was bribing the previous government.
Harmon later explained that it was not the way it seemed. He said, “I visited the People’s Republic of China on official Government business in March 2016. The Ambassador of China to Guyana, who was in the country at that time, made arrangements for me to meet officials of four companies which had signalled their intention to make significant investments in Guyana.
“These Companies were located in Beijing, Shanghai, Hebei and Heilong Jiang Provinces.
”In this regard, because of the significant distances involved and the limited time available on that trip, the Ambassador made arrangements for these companies to provide transportation, both air and land, for me to travel to their respective Head Offices.
”On March 27, 2016, one such arrangement was made for me to visit Long Jiang Forest Industries Group, a Company situated in Heilong Jiang Province. The Long Jiang Forest Industries Group is a state-owned company that had acquired 55 percent of the shares in BaiShanLin and is intended to fully take over the company in 2016.
”Two officials from the Long Jiang Forest Industries Group, along with two officials from BaiShanLin, accompanied me on the aircraft on the flight from Beijing to Heilong Jiang Province to attend the meeting.”
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