Jan 04, 2021 Freddie Kissoon
Kaieteur News- If you are not qualified in the humanities and the social sciences and not interested in Guyana’s politics and sociology, then I still maintain that once you live and work here and will be doing so for years to come that you read an excellent analysis of why the UK left the European Union by an equally fine British historian.
Titled “How Delusions About World War II Fed Brexit Mania” by Max Hastings (Bloomberg.com/opinion,” January 3, 2021), the article is a Freudian analysis of what lied deep inside the collective mind of the British people, particularly, the upper classes and it came to the surface with the Brexit campaign. When you digest that interpretation, then try to transport what Hastings said about British people to the African Guyana middle class and sections of African Guyanese in general.
The rigging of the election for five consecutive months in 2020 revealed what has always been inside the mind of the African-dominated PNC, and African Guyanese – the government should always be in the hands of Black leadership. This was Forbes Burnham’s expanding obsession. But Burnham went further.
The traditional African intellectual class and substantial amounts of Afro-Guyanese believed in the binary of power – government for Blacks, business for Indians. Burnham attempted with huge success to eradicate this binary. He implemented prodigious controls of Guyana’s resources severely weakening the private capitalist spheres which decapitated Portuguese Guyanese commerce and Indian businesses
Halim Majeed, a former advisor to Burnham wrote a small book entitled, “Forbes Burnham: National Reconciliation and National Unity, 1984-1985,” in which he eulogized Burnham for Burnham’s overtures to Cheddi Jagan to form a national government in 1984. Majeed was either deliberately propagandistic or naïve or intellectually incapable of analyzing the essence of Burnham’s character. By 1984, Burnham was too far gone in the direction of narcissism, monarchial status and maniacal obsessions to genuinely share power (see my review of Majeed’s book in KN of December.9, 2005; “A foolish yet interesting little book. Conclusion – The Guyanese Pinocchio”)
Out of power since 1992, the chance to reenact Burnham’s claim on Guyana came in 2015. Not prepared to cede power and contest it again when election time came around, the African political and intellectual groupings decided that the configurations of Guyana that Burnham shaped in 1968 should be reclaimed – government for Blacks, capitalism for Indians.
But 2020 was not 1968. 2020 was not 1980. Those were past epochs long gone. In trying to bring back the seventies and eighties, sections of African Guyanese population almost destroyed the entire territory. Guyana was reduced to a literal joke in the eyes of the world. But it wasn’t light facetiousness. It was a dangerous circus.
I suggest you listen to the last programme of the year of “Wake Up Guyana” on Kaieteur Radio played on the 31st in which I was the guest alongside three young journalists – Kemol King, Shikema Dey and Mikaila Prince. The last two spoke of the attacks on them outside of the GECOM Head office. They were so frightened that they went back to their offices and cried. King said that 2020 was a rude awakening for him as to what Guyanese politicians were like. He singled out, Aubrey Norton. For all three of these young journalists, the year 2020 will be forever etched in their minds.
The more correct way of putting it is that 2020 will be permanently stamped on the walls of the minds of all of us. It will take tons of columns to assess 2020 because tons of depravities unheard of took place and not only in the eyes of Guyanese but in full view of the world.
Can the people who are 18 years old ever forget 2020 in their homeland? I doubt it very much. They were too young to recall anything similar as to what took place on that fateful day of Wednesday March 4 when Mingo began openly to rig the elections. But not only the young generation will forever remember 2020 but also the AFC leaders who have now been assigned to obscurity. As they grow older and completely fade away, they will look back upon 2020 as their nemesis.
Finally, the youthful leaders in the PNC will grow older and will not have power in the foreseeable future. When talking to their children in 2030 why the PNC doesn’t look likely to form the government, 2020 will come up. If they are honest with their children, they will tell them that 2020 was the year that the PNC stupidly and unnecessarily destroyed itself. As for the African people in general Guyana belongs to them and to all other race groups too.
(The views expressed in this article are those of the author and do not necessarily reflect the opinions of this newspaper.)
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