Aug 08, 2020 Letters Comments Off on Opposition should congratulate ruling party
The election is over. Now is the time for healing and reconciliation and to bring the nation together and for institutional reconstruction. Opposition acrimony or cries of fraud would not help any party or the nation with healing. Contrary to what others may feel, the election was free and fair according to credible observers and the individuals who served as technical experts to the commission. The newly sworn in government is recognized globally. That would not change until another election or a court says otherwise. The government should be allowed to carry out the important task at hand amidst cooperation from the opposition. The new government faces monumental challenges as it confronts possible tensions with the opposition and its supporters and in the battle for peace and justice. The government has inherited a very fragile state – not only politically but economically as well with the country bankrupt. Continued opposition to the outcome would only prolong the acrimony and disunity that characterize the country.
I recall in May 2015, when a victory was declared for the coalition amidst cries of fraud, the opposition caved in and did not declare the government as ‘fraudulent’ even though there were questions about fake statements of polls. Several eminent Indians (not the least being Swami Aksharnanda, Roshan Khan, Ravi Dev, Rhyaan Shah, Baytoram Ramharack, and yours truly, among others) urged the PPP to concede defeat and let the court resolve the problem. The PPP acted as advised. I also appealed to the PPP leadership to congratulate the coalition on its achievement. I await the conscience of African intellectuals calling on the coalition to accept defeat and congratulate the PPP on a well-earned victory. African voices must not be silent. They were mostly quiet when there was a bold attempt to perpetrate fraud. I salute my African brothers and sisters, like Ruel Johnson, Alan Fenty, Nigel Hinds, and those in the Citizens’ Initiative, TNM, Change Guyana, ANUG, URP, who condemned and opposed electoral fraud. They are our heroes and heroines in the mould of Walter Rodney. Tacuma, David Hinds, Nigel Westmaas, Karen D’Souza, among others, disappointed the nation.
Neither domestic nor international observers nor any of minor parties detected any fraud that would alter the result that the PPP won. Elements in the coalition, including the leadership of the AFC, should congratulate Dr. Irfaan Ali on his ascension to the Presidency, Dr. Bharrat Jagdeo to the Vice Presidency, and Mark Phillips as Prime Minister. Such magnanimity would go a long way to strengthening democratic governance.
Dr. Vishnu Bisram
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