The above named four persons are young men who graduated from UG. They were my students; they did the required introductory philosophy course with me. They have successful careers. Craig went on to the Ph.D. level. Edmond is a successful lawyer. Marlon Williams is doing well on the corporate ladder, and Trevor Williams was once a marketing manager with Digicel, and is now pursuing a law degree at UG.
All four went into politics with the AFC. Trevor was a parliamentarian. Marlon was General Secretary of the AFC. Leonard is currently assistant general secretary. All four are executive members of the AFC. This country needs a younger breed of politicians; people without the baggage of the current leaders that could weigh down an aircraft carrier.
I honestly thought these four young men were part of the future we are looking for in Guyana, but the disappointment is enormous. Why would such promising young men allow themselves to be kowtowed by those who carry such baggage? Can these four gentlemen save their political career after the March general poll? Would people still accept them when our young politicians are supposed to be leading from the front and they are not?
Let us examine the silence of this group of four against the background of what is taking place inside their party. The executive is the leadership of a political party. No one or two or three persons can shape the directions of a party or make policies for it, unless the executive sees the documents and approves of them. There are top leaders in a party that can design those directions and shape those policies, but they have to be taken to the executive.
The AFC renewed the Cummingsburg Accord with APNU, with some glaring differences from the original covenant. The executive body of the AFC was not presented with that document and has not approved of it. I would think that the young men I named above, who have a future in politics, would see that this is not democratic politics. How can these youths go forward in the future when they see this lack of democracy and remain unmoved?
But there is more to come. I saw an interview on a Guyana Chronicle programme named, “Vantage Point”, with Svetlana Marshall interviewing Khemraj Ramjattan. When asked how the election campaign is going, Ramjattan said that in 2015 when the AFC held campaign meetings in PPP strongholds, it would get about 25 attendees. In 2020, the AFC is getting about 300 in those PPP niches.
This is phenomenal brilliance. Ramjattan is referring to over 1200 percent increase in support. Then I am asking these four young politicians how they and the other 32 executive members against this backdrop of massive increase in support for the AFC among PPP supporters, could have accepted reduction in resource allocation in the renewed Cummingsburg Accord of 30 percent, from 40 percent in 2015?
Something is not right here. It is either phenomenal brilliance or phenomenal masturbation. From Ramjattan’s own words, logical deduction will inform the researcher that from receiving 10 percent of the votes in 2015, the AFC will collect a larger percentage in next month’s poll. Logically, then, in the renewed Cummingsburg Accord, the AFC’s Cabinet allocation and parliamentary seat allocation should go up. But they went down.
How can these four executives that I know so well and expected so much of explain this mystery? And why are they silent on the pronouncement of Ramjattan to the media that the renewed Cummingsburg Accord will remain a secret? My fear is that these four young AFC executives and others like them in the AFC are heading for self-destruction. How can they tell the people of Guyana that they are the future leaders when they do not embrace openness in politics?
I will conclude this commentary with reflections on two issues. First, there was the local government election (LGE). This was held just fifteen months ago. Both Nagamootoo and Ramjattan lost the NDC contest to the PPP in their respective hometowns of Whim and Number 48 village. In that LGE, the AFC contested 38 NDCs, mostly in PPP’s strongholds, and lost all 38. The PPP won a majority of the NDCs countrywide. What changed so profoundly that after 15 months the AFC has increased its support in PPP strongholds by 1200 percent?
Finally, AFC held a campaign meeting last week across the road from where I live, in Cummings Lodge. This is a PPP fortress. AFC got beaten badly there in the LGE. I was at this meeting. Nagamootoo spoke to about 12 persons. The Stabroek News published the photo of the gathering. Ramjattan’s phantasmagoria is dangerous.
(The views expressed in this article are those of the author and do not necessarily reflect the opinions of this newspaper.)
Apr 06, 2020By Zaheer Mohamed Port Kaituma Football Foundation (PKFF) is one of the leading sports organisations in Region One. The body was formed in 2009 with the aim of developing sports in the area. Its...
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