It is clear that Mr. Bharrat Jagdeo, who now personifies the Peoples Progressive Party (PPP) and is the only person allowed to speak for that group is trapped in the ‘old politics of Guyana. Listen carefully to the cunningly crafted ‘dog-whistles’ and the not so elegant language of this Constitutional Office holder and one can see clearly that Jagdeo is trapped in and wants to take this country back to, the divisive politics of the past.
Those were the days when ethnic support determined elections results and campaign tactics. The political landscape was one not of ideas, but instead, of racial rivalry. At the end of these ethnic censuses, the winner walked away victorious and the country remained divided.
What Mr. Jagdeo fails to realise is that the tide of ideas in Guyanese politics has turned. We have moved away from confrontation and collision, to cooperation and coalition. The new politics is aimed at creating a community with a common cause. Instead of fighting each other and using our differences to divide and rule, we are a movement aimed at reaffirming our common commitment to confront the challenges facing our nation.
To quote President David Granger; “We are a movement to establish an equitable society, in a stable political environment with a prosperous economy. We are a movement, most of all, to secure the future of our youth and our children.”
The present political climate creates an opportunity for cooperation and consultation, but unfortunately the PPP in the person of Mr. Jagdeo is not interested. The Constitution clearly at Article 106(7) leaves open the door for legislative dialogue, but Mr. Jagdeo has chosen to shut that door. The question must be asked; why is the PPP bent on confrontation and collision?
APNU+AFC has always advocated for inclusionary democracy. The Constitution of Guyana has ordained: “The principal objective of the political system of the State is to establish an inclusionary democracy by providing increasing opportunities for participation of citizens and their organisations in the management and decision -making process of the State, with particular emphasis on those areas of decision-making that directly affect their wellbeing.”
The parties that make up the coalition are determined and will continue to advocate for inclusionary democracy. We owe it to future generations that the politics of the past remain in the past. We still believe that our task is to transform disunited parties into a government of national unity. In short, APNU+AFC has embraced change.
A political party that does not change dies and the PPP is dying ideologically and intellectually. It has no ideas about how to transform Guyana. It has no interest in how to change Guyana. The party has given its voice to one man who wants to take our country back. Back to what? Back to corruption? Back to the crime spree, murder and mayhem that characterised his 12 years as President? Back to Cronyism? Back to governing in the interest of a favoured few? Back to control-freakism and no local democracy? Why exactly one must ask, is the PPP promising/promoting a sordid past instead of promising a glorious future?
The evidence is there for all to see, that the coalition APNU+AFC over the last three years has governed in the national interest. The Coalition is the face of the future. Our common commitment is to give all Guyanese a ‘good life’ and we encourage members and supporters of the PPP to join us as compatriots as we work together to ensure that our children enjoy a great future.
In 2015 APNU and the AFC came together because Guyana was at a breaking point. Guyanese were tired and fatigued after more than two decades of a failed PPP government. The PPP had dragged our nation to the pit of the human development index. The record numbers of arson, armed robbery, murders, suicides, road fatalities, illiteracy, unemployment, trafficking in persons, and trafficking in narcotics had made Guyana a pariah state in this hemisphere. The PPP worse still, had divided our nation.
APNU+AFC after just over three years in office has turned the ship of state around. The Coalition has put an end to cronyism at high levels that was draining our financial resources; we established a procurement commission; we have started to arrest the crime that was bleeding the bodies of our women and youth and scaring away investors; we have begun to clean up the corruption in our law-enforcement and regulatory agencies; we have cleaned up and restored our capital city, kept the nation safe, and public and investor confidence has been restored.
To quote President David Granger “the APNU+AFC coalition is a visionary combination of political and social forces that has the capacity to ensure that a real government of national unity emerges; not a bogus civic alliance; that our multi-ethnic, multi-cultural society provides a place for all citizens to prosper; that our people- regardless of their gender, geographic location, class, creed or ethnic origin-enjoy a good life; that an environment which is free from the ravages of poverty and discrimination and from the scourge of criminal violence, epidemic disease and ignorance is created and that information and communication technology is extended to all corners of our great country.
The APNU+AFC coalition is actually more than six parties. It has become a national movement for transformation. The whole is greater than the sum of all its parts. The momentum that the coalition has generated is evidence of the people’s satisfaction…. United we stand a better chance to fulfil our destiny. Divided, we fall victim to the tactics of the PPP.”
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