Though we are in some form of peace time, this one is of the kind that is most sensitive to the touch. And as I try to make some sense of the recent spate of arsons, I question why so many now, with an emphasis on government buildings, and with particular emphasis on the GHRA building?
By way of background and dealing with state-owned buildings first, I recall: an abandoned army building, the Umana Yana, the Court at Suddie, a police location somewhere (excuse me) have all been in the mix. I have been back for several years now, and I do not think that there were so many instances of actual fires set, or attempts to do so, involving government property in all that time. Yet here we are with a flurry of them occurring almost on the heels of each other, and especially around this tense time. Because I am so cynical, I refuse to settle for these as the handiwork of either loose cannons or lone rangers or thrill seekers. These fires were neither electrical nor haphazard, as in random. So, what and who is left?
I now go further. Government buildings are not family owned or part of any family feuds (go carefully on this whole family business here); not biological ones anyway. Then, there is no partnership involved, but in the peculiar and unique concoctions of Guyana, there just may be, but not along the traditional commercial lines. Think of a word beginning with “p” and of families locked in an extended dispute, an impasse, so to speak, with the courts abused and misused by the adversarial parties. Having ruled out family and partnership, there is one group remaining. That would be addicts, meaning the usual junkies and crazies and crop of deportees. The usual ones, I knock out. It is the official ones, those operating with an eye to gaining rushes and fixes to satiate national cravings. I hope by now that Guyanese get where I am going with all of this.
It is that all of the regular suspects capable of, and who would usually resort to arson to settle scores are off the hook. So, if they are not implicated, then who and what am I missing? The way I see it, there are groups with frustrating problems on their minds that are not getting their way that have decided to take matters up a notch through several carefully selected arson targets. If nothing else, and at the very least, a message is sent, and a warning (several of them) delivered when engagement in the skulking and cowardly acts of arson occur. I think the situation speaks for itself and could only point in one or two directions. I put nothing past nobody. Nothing! And none!
I get even more specific now and spend a few moments on the matter of the Guyana Human Rights Association. If that is not arson, then I don’t know what is. And by that, I mean arson of a certain kind, with a certain kind of prints and other related forensics. Those who dare to question, or challenge, or object are targeted, and in the GHRA, there is no better target. All the signs and portents are writhing in the direction which I pinpoint in such a nuanced fashion.
Now here we are with national anxieties of an impending crisis, and a profoundly pervasive one. The guns present in this society are endless. And so, too, are the accelerants and human authors (and those behind them) to make multiple acts of arson possible. These arsons are deliberate and not accidental; they have perverse outcomes as objectives. They have intellectual ownership. This is where I stand.
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