I wrote this more than a week ago but held it, pending the current GECOM farce. I fully expect the inevitable result will be based on the GECOM verified recount and sanctioned by CARICOM. I, like most Guyanese at home and abroad, celebrate the completion of the recount while awaiting the decision of GECOM and the final outcome of this ignominious election. I see this as the beginning of a slow, torturous and uncertain path to a new Guyana, good or bad. However, while I celebrate the fall of the incompetent, unethical, and incorrigible PNC cabal, its sycophants and surrogates, I am not celebrating the PPP victory.
I have no positive expectations of the partisan, race-baiting, corrupt, incompetent and unaccountable PPP cabal, driven from office in 2015 by the collective objections of the media and civil society. The ineptitude and incoherence of the PNC cabal in these inglorious times helped me to understand the persistence of the PPP, despite the colossal political, social, economic, and environmental costs they imposed on Guyanese.
In retrospect, I realized Guyanese were unfortunately left to choose between the very bad and the least worst of two parties ordained by a constitutional and electoral framework they (PPP and PNC) contrived. The post-celebration challenge for most Guyanese is how to move forward, positively, carrying the weight of dysfunctional constitutional, legislative, and electoral systems poised perilously on the shoulders of grossly compromised and dysfunctional institutions, such as Parliament, Judiciary, the Police Force, Statutory Agencies etc, which are supposed to hold autocratic Governments and their agents in check.
Lest we forget, the PPP had made many promises over 23 years to fix these problems. Instead, they exacerbated most of them and were blatantly autocratic, despite slim majorities or as a minority government.
Guyana’s gravest threats right now are increasing authoritarian rule and capture of the nation’s oil bounty by politicians, officers, their relatives, close associates and friends, a la “The Resource Curse and Democracy: Lessons for Guyana,” issues identified by, Michael Ross, professor of political science at UCLA.
Guyanese only have to reflect (or read archival news and letters) on the 2010 to 2014 period to be reminded of Bai Shan Lin, Berbice Bridge, Skeldon Factory, Pradoville Two, Marriott, etc and popular sentiments expressed about the government. In fact, Guyanese reflections may be mirrored right next door in Venezuela and Brazil, where popularly elected politicians were declared convicts. The indictment of the PPP’s presidential candidate on corruption charges and questions about his personal ethics are not matters to be considered lightly, despite his potential immunities. Again, one only has to look across at Suriname, to see convicts using political office to hide from justice.
Whatever the future holds. I am still celebrating thesuccessful engagement of all the true young Guyanese who braved the weather, COVID, scurrilous comments, and a painstakingly primitive system to count each and every one of the 460K + ballots cast in this election.
I thank them from the bottom of my heart for their thoughtfulness, resilience, nationalism and commitment to excellence throughout the process. I am hoping they endure as Guyana goes forward.
They are the Guyanese, for which Guyana has been waiting.
The success of any nascent political transformation has to include engaging Guyana’s diverse population in finding paths to improving their wellbeing.
Guyana’s future is inexorably tied to the wellbeing of Guyanese of all classes, ethnicities, educational levels, trades, geographies, genders, marital status, sexual orientations, religions, origins, opiate choices, etc, many of whom have been neglected or ignored.
New initiates have to go beyond serving the few local special interests in mining, agriculture, commerce and service who have pandered to the political directorate while systematically dispossessing Guyanese of ownership and control of their resources. They have to overcome the partnerships with international timber, mining, agriculture and commercial conglomerates who have kept Guyana as a primary raw material producer with little human and capital development for advancing technology and market penetration.
Instead, Guyanese have to be engaged in appropriate sustainable endeavours, which build human and physical capacity while ensuring equitable social engagement and environmentally sound activities.
Keep your faith in integrity, hard work, merit, and accountability young Guyanese, your and Guyana’s future are what you make of it.
As you have no doubt learnt, the process is as important as the outcome.
The process of transformation of Guyana is continuous and ongoing. Celebrate each victory as you go forward, this is as sweet as Mashramani, Phagwah, Eid, Xmas, Kwanzaa, Spring Festival all put together. We old people like to partake. Call on us, we don’t only fete, we also contribute.
Jul 04, 2020Trophy Stall has thrown its support behind the Pre-Caricom Day dominoes competition which is set for Sunday at R and R Sports Club, 76 Meadowbrook Gardens. The organisers were yesterday presented...
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Moses Nagamootoo and Khemraj Ramjattan spoke to the Chronicle about social media manipulations in Guyana elections. They... more
By Sir Ronald Sanders There have been unhelpful and destructive attacks by leading members and zealous supporters of the... more
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