Here are the words of President Granger: “The parties are near equal…by formula — as has been laid out by my colleague Rupert Roopnaraine — people who win 51 per cent of the votes must not behave as if they won 100 per cent of the votes and people who only got 49 per cent of the votes must not be treated as if they got no per cent of the votes and, I live by that. I would like to see an inclusionary form of government.”
Granger and Roopnaraine had five years of power, and not even for a fleeting moment, Granger and his colleague, the “great” WPA leader, Roopnaraine, ever inputted into their exercise of power, inclusionary policies in at least one sector or area of life in Guyana or even one geographical district.
As for Roopnaraine, his legacy has dissolved into volcanic ash. He will be remembered for shameless, political conduct in office while representing the WPA. Here are two examples of Roopnaraine’s morbid hypocrisy and Granger was foolish enough to quote him. First, for the purpose of this article, I went and researched everything David Hinds wrote about how the WPA was treated by the PNC while they both held power from 2015.
The search was inadequate because I missed several letters in the newspapers which did not show up in my search. I found four times Hinds wrote that the WPA was ignored as a party that formed part of the government. I found five times Hinds lamented how the WPA was mistreated by the PNC from 2015. These nine examples are not the limit. I am sure he wrote that more than nine times.
This same Roopnaraine believes that when a party wins an election by 51 percent, it should reach out to the loser who got 49 percent. But this same (Roopnaraine’s) party and he were not included in the output of policies of a government of which he and his party were part of. The WPA in a press release told the nation that after Roopnaraine’s resignation from government service, the WPA was not informed by Roopnaraine that he had cancelled his resignation.
The second manifestation of Roopnaraine’s hypocrisy has two aspects: one public, the other private. Tacuma Ogunseye wrote a letter in the newspapers that Roopnaraine’s stated position to the WPA is that he cannot discuss government business with the WPA. Roopnaraine said the two are separate.
The private dimension relates to a meeting Hinds, Dr. Alissa Trotz and secretary of the WPA Overseas Group, Keith Branche, had with Minister of Education, Roopnaraine, in his office. So incensed was Branche with Roopnaraine’s approach to power that over lunch at the Tastee Dish restaurant on David Street, Kitty, he had extremely harsh words to say about Roopnaraine’s transformation. It would be good for history if these three WPA officials can tell us what Roopnaraine’s politics became after he got power.
What about Granger? Does he believe in inclusive governance? He is a point three percent president. That is the margin by which he won the presidency. In actual vote counting, he won by less than 5,000 ballots in 2015. In 2011, in rejecting the theory that Moses Nagamootoo’s status created the PPP’s defeat in 2011, he cited the role of Charrandass Persaud in bringing votes to the AFC in 2011.
After 2015, Charrandass was made MP for Berbice. Yet Persaud did not know about the closing of the sugar estates in Berbice. Persaud told this columnist, he read about it in the press. So much for Granger’s belief in inclusive governance. It is not only Roopnaraine who is a hypocrite, but Granger is a bigger one. Two of the APNU+AFC supporters – David Hinds and Lincoln Lewis – chose to write an occasion criticism in the Chronicle and were removed. In a conversation with the then board chairman of the Chronicle outside the Aquatic Centre, I found out why the two men were removed and the crucial voice that decided their removal.
Finally, Granger does not have the courage to publicly stand by his decisions. He hides under his underlings. The amendment to the marijuana law never saw the light of day even though it was on the Order Paper of the House waiting to be debated and voted on. Guess why the amendment was never passed? Ask AFC parliamentarian, Michael Carrington. In an interview with the media, he said Granger was uncomfortable with its passage. Granger broke a campaign promise and felt he had no obligation to the nation to explain. Both Granger and Roopnaraine have faded into history where they have become ephemeral footnotes.
COLUMNIST’S NOTE: Yesterday’s column was satire, mocking APNU+AFC’s claim of fake voting.
(The views expressed in this article are those of the author and do not necessarily reflect the opinions of this newspaper.)
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