Most people are familiar with that old saying, “whom the gods wish to destroy they first make mad.” If I had any respect for Irfaan Ali, he has lost it. If I had any admiration for Irfaan he has lost it. I am referring to his recent press conference in which he appointed Kwame McCoy to direct.
Irfaan has gone mad. The gods have destroyed him. Of course the gods rendered him incompetent before sending him off to Hades. How perceptive is Ali? The question is he isn’t at all. Just take a fleeting glance at any PPP rally the past three months and you will see handsome and beautiful young people in the crowd, many of whom have university degrees.
Why Irfaan would leave these fine young minds and invite McCoy to chaperone his press conference? You have to ask the question if Irfaan has any commonsense. You are a presidential candidate, you need to attract voters. You then have to find aides that would excite those voters. You have to surround yourself with personnel who will bring people to your campaign.
Of all the lovely faces and bodies and talent in the PPP, Irfaan chose McCoy to host his press conference. In doing so, I feel personally insulted by Irfaan. McCoy was charged for attacking me after his co-defendant, Jason Abdulla gave a confession statement to the police implicating McCoy. Magistrate Judy Latchman freed McCoy.
I don’t think for a moment that Latchman should be a magistrate. I still remember when I was called to give evidence on my first day on the stand, Latchman quoted from one of my columns, directly reading it for me and recited the lines of the famous soft rock ballad, “Hotel California,” in full view of the courtroom. I thought that after that, the Judicial Service Commission would have invited her to offer an explanation for such a bizarre moment.
I read in the newspapers someone who signed his name as Dr. Devendra Sharma with the appellation of professor of behavioural sciences. Dr. Sharma was lamenting the negative portraits of Guyana painted in the newspapers and from people who speak to him. I don’t think the gentleman lives in Guyana or in recent memory has lived in the land but as a professor of behavioural sciences he needs to explain the eerie behavioural things that go on in this country like the magistrate and her “Hotel California” lyrics and Irfaan choosing Kwame.
The DPP has not appealed Latchman’s decision. And of course I know why? I also don’t think the current holder of the DPP’s office should be there. But let’s return to Irfaan’s strange behaviour. Why would he choose McCoy? This guy is a serial offender. He has convictions in the courts. His pattern of deportment when he was the darling of Presidents Jagdeo and Ramotar hasn’t changed. I was told he is back on television. I hardly look at television and why would I watch McCoy.
If this is the kind of politics Irfaan is going to display then he hasn’t a chance in winning the next general election. Irfaan is supposed to be trained in economics, and statistics are part of economic studies. It is simple to determine how demographics work in our elections. In a polity where ethnic voting is entrenched, the PPP will not get African votes. To get over the 50 percent line, Amerindians, Indian and mixed race voters have to take them there.
The PPP will not get a majority of the Amerindian votes. That will be split between the APNC+AFC, PPP and Amerindian based party. The PPP will not attract substantial numbers from the mix race sector. That leaves Indians. The PPP will not get a hundred percent of Indian votes.
There are the Federal United Party in Berbice and ANUG. There is also a small percent of young educated Indians that are not obsessed with race politics. Irfaan and his association with McCoy will alienate them. There are also a small number of Indians who are not fond of Jagdeo. This will include decent middle age Indians who remember the vulgar era of Jagdeo and Ramotar.
I would describe Irfaan’s press conference as a disaster. It shows that he has learnt nothing from the four years he has been in opposition. It shows that he may have learnt nothing from politics in general.
The reliance of the PPP on Kwame McCoy indicated that the PPP leaders will not change their attitude to politics and this country. The no-confidence vote has further driven the fever of invincibility in them. They are in for a rude awakening.
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