Permit response to the Publisher’s Comment, titled “David Hinds and Lincoln Lewis quitting Kaieteur News” in the 2nd August 2020 edition. This issue has to do with the withdrawal of the column, “Eye on Guyana with Lincoln Lewis.” It can be stated categorically, without fear of successful contradiction, that I have never “tried to present as fact misinformation” nor was it ever said to me “to use the space provided to uplift and accurately inform the Guyanese public without regard to race or creed.” Further, at no time has the newspaper communicated I “went against the basic tenets of responsible journalism.” I take it there was no need to and basically outside of the incidents below my relationship was problem free.
In the two years as a columnist there were two instances in the post-voting day period (after March 2nd) where I was asked to withdraw articles. One, after the publisher expressed discomfort with my analysis of the acting Chief Justice’s position on the contempt case brought by the late Reeaz Holladar because such conflicted with the paper’s position. Said article was published in another newspaper. The other instance dealt with my response to a columnist where I was asked not to respond in kind. In a prior case involving the same individual then editor Adam Harris withheld further comments by both parties. However, because I felt that I was due a response this was sent to another media outlet for publishing.
All my work is published in the public domain and can be reviewed for libel and inappropriateness. Those who are bold enough to be honest in these times have seen and can attest to my intolerance for misrepresentation about issues or against persons. I take seriously my civic duty as a citizen; passionately articulate and defend my views, but never from a position of misrepresentation and/or gut-feelings. I civilly parted company with the newspaper as a columnist not from a position of acrimony, but one based on personal convictions for it was difficult to read the rancour and misrepresentation that to me signalled the newspaper’s departure from upholding credible journalism as a foundation on which society must be built.
It was also noted attacks allowed on me, calling for me to no longer be allowed to be a columnist, likewise it was brought to my attention I was treading on sacred political ground and creating tensions. Being mindful of the political environment I thought it a wise decision to leave before being asked to or forced to become sterile in my writings since the newspaper’s pathway of diverse frankness had changed. Whereas there is respect for the Publisher’s right to articulate his position on my departure as a columnist I find the misrepresentation as mentioned in his comment to be unfortunate and unnecessary. I hope it was a result of journalistic slips and not willful, for I have held him to a high standard over the years based on the niche his papers held in holding all governments accountable without exception, that we in Guyana had grown accustomed to.
I have friends in Kaietuer News and still have high regards for the potential of this media.
Publisher’s Note: Lincoln Lewis will continue to be Lincoln Lewis and Glenn Lall will continue to be Glenn Lall. I wish Lincoln Lewis well and hopes he will use his pen as a weapon to end the abuse of the nation’s patrimony.
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