Do you know in which milieu I get most of my questions concerning my columns? Well, a commentator meets people in all types of circumstances. Because of the nature of those environments, some people are circumspect when they stop you. They don’t like to disturb you when you are walking your dog. They think you want to be in a contemplative mood (they got that right I can assure you). They don’t want to intervene when you are in exercise mood.
When I am having lunch or dinner, they would come up, greet me, shake hands with David Hinds and they are gone in seconds. They just don’t want to be intrusive.
The most popular forum I find is supermarket shopping. The reason is simple; they know you are in a light mood, and have time. There are no restraint in wanting to engage you. Yesterday, as I opened the freezer door of Survival Supermarket to get chicken mince, this guy was looking in the freezer too. He offered his appreciation for the series I am doing on the year in review (2017). Then he went to a specific column; the one on Moses Nagamootoo last Thursday .
He said, “Freddie, I want you to ask that man a question” And he went on. He told me he saw that the Prime Minister praised his government last year for appointing a new Ombudsman. Then he said, “Freddie, man, write a column asking that man what happened to your case at UG that the Ombudsman ruled on?”
I said I don’t want to write about myself so I suggested he tell me what other question (s) I should put to the Prime Minister.
You are not going to believe what the question is; which ministry of the government the Prime Minister has a portfolio in? I told him I will publish his question but I can give him the answer right there and then. He is in charge of governance. Trust me dear readers; the average person knows their politics. We intellectuals like to think only people like us can string together political concepts. If we think like that we are wrong. The average man/woman is familiar with political and social dimensions.
Last year, I visited Leguan with my wife to attend the funeral of one of her uncles. I grounded with some of the farmers there and I can tell you; those people from that island understand what is taking place politically in Guyana. The gentleman closed the freezer door, looked at me with Draculean eyes and retorted; “governance, what governance; Harmon is in charge of governance, the Prime Minister is in charge of nothing.”
He paused, then spoke again and said; “Maan Freddie, I want you to write about how you feel about the Prime Minister. You is a maan that does express yourself freely; do it man, I want to see you do it.”
I had my chicken mince in my hand, was about to leave and then he spoiled my morning. I told him if and when I write about what he asked me to do I will say that I met Mr. So and So in the supermarket .I would like to identify him so readers would not think I am making it up.
The man’s formidable glare turned to an empty stare. He said, “Freddie, yuh joking maan, I don’t want nobody come after me.” I left him with these words, “I will write about it.”
So here I am I writing about it. The first thing is the question as to what portfolio the Prime Minister has. It is up to Moses to reply. The second request is that I publish my impressions of the Prime Minister. I am not going to be personal. I want to avoid the personal at all cost.
As second in charge of the Government of Guyana, the Prime Minister must expect his actions to be analysed by academics and commentators.
I have lost complete respect for Moses Nagamootoo as a politician and Prime Minister. I am in my mid sixties and I have known Moses for more than forty years. After he became Prime Minister, I saw some deep flaws. I don’t know if it has to do with power. But there was one incident that left me so stunned that I do not think I can ever forgive him.
I told AFC parliamentarian, Michael Carrington, that I was so depressed and shocked at his attitude that I would use insulting language to him if I ever had another conversation with Nagamootoo.
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I am sure that when Moses Nagamootoo was penning his Sunday Chronicle column (yesterday’s date), he had no clue that Lincoln... more
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