May 26, 2020 Letters
I do not agree with him, and I have told him so more than once in relation to his emphasis on Guyana’s oil. But I have to give it to him, Mr. Glenn Lall, walks the talk of oil. In Guyana, he is what the Texans would call a real oilman, and on this, he may be the only one in this country.
In spite of repeated urgings that matters-developments, exposés, inclusive of the embarrassing and lopsided-regarding this nation’s oil wealth and relationships, and the abuses and injustices that have come from both, he insists on persisting with oil stories and oil truths. He stays the course with warnings about the dismal truths regarding our blessings, which may not turn out to be the benefits they have been touted to be in the long run. In fact, given the scandalous and eye-opening narratives, some mindboggling, this oil of ours could turn out to be more than a curse, it has the potential to make us die by a thousand cuts and either in our knees or flat on our faces, when we are forced to grovel in the ground.
No other paper, or local news channel, has set aside the time, resources, and space to ventilate the stunting growing pains of our infant oil promise. That is sum of our oil hopes, only the promise that is encircled by those hopes and no more. The reality will prove the rightness or wrongness of the information pursued and shared nationally, through the auspices of the newspaper of which he is owner and publisher. While the nation is steadfastly focused on the priorities of the virus and the recount, though not necessarily in that same order, the man is current with intense coverage of both, but still finds the time, interest, and drive to feature countless issues giving prominence to Guyana’s oil weaknesses and the financial and social woes that would automatically accrue.
He walks the oil talk daily. Whole pages of his paper are utilized to get across sharp, unsparing, and relentless messages to the Guyanese public, to ExxonMobil and company, and to whoever else cares to read or listen to the many injustices of the many unbelievable ‘back stories’ uncovered. That is money not earned, but spent, when advertising space and dollars are sacrificed, when staff time is dedicated to getting the stories out in front of the public. There is the angering of and the distancing by those who find his untimely and inconvenient reminders to be so many bones in the throats and spurs in the behind.
His competitors do not attach the same drive to what has become a cause for him. I do not blame them, since they have bigger fish, according to their calculations, to fry. He thinks the opposite in that there is no bigger fish around. I do not endorse fully the timing of the delivery of the embedded messages, as I think that the attention of the nation is committed elsewhere, hence loss of traction. Still, l have to appreciate his unswerving emphases on this oil of ours, which may turn out not to be ours at all. He perseveres against the dissenting counsels of well-wishers, the rage of those who have since consigned him into the ranks of an adversary that is well-equipped and well prepared to go the miles and to go to the limits on anything and everything related to oil. It just might be the dearest thing to his heart. There is no such thing as the right time to deliver oil news, good or bad; it has been almost all bad. He does not care about overkill, cautions to the contrary notwithstanding.
Though we do not see eye to eye on more than a few matters of significance, on oil he has no equal in this country, and should be so recognized and hailed. Like I said, he might be the only real oilman in Guyana today. When the dust settles on elections disputes and coronavirus fears, he may come into his own for the tireless service-indeed commitment and sacrifices-that he has made for the protection of Guyana’s interests over its oil blessings.
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