Feb 13, 2021 Editorial
Kaieteur News – A few days ago, the family and friends of Haresh Singh took to the public arena to express their impatience, their concerns, and their uncertainties with where things stand in the matter of their murdered loved one. It is also fair and accurate to say that the family of this deceased Guyanese harbours all of those sharp feelings, and from which comes much anger. It is more than where things stand with his murder; it is of them wanting to know what is going on, and how much.
Most unfortunately, and in more than one respect, Haresh Singh is not only dead, but is a victim several times over in the political, racial, and criminal cauldron that is Guyana. He is a victim of circumstances, a murderous event that, with the passage of time, has been absorbed and overwhelmed by the sheer wantonness and gruesomeness of the murder of the two Henry cousins in next-door Cotton Tree. By their very barbaric nature, those murders commanded all media headlines and corresponding national attention. And when the surrounding contexts and conjectures were introduced, more like hurled, into the mix, then no one else and nothing else could compete for space or time or sustained interest.
In the midst of what was nothing less than a national trauma, the racial violence, the political involvements, the historical memories, and the communal reactions all combined effortlessly to sweep everything else from the map. With that, Haresh Singh was swept out to sea with the roaring tide. His brutal death first became secondary to the main events, and was then washed away into a state of yesterday’s news, many hazy yesterdays ago. Although in some ways related to the shocking murders of the Henry youngsters, which none should even try to deny, it is as though his violent death on a lonely back road did not happen at all.
To a great extent, his death is an inconvenient reminder of what political sensitiveness and careful positioning, in some quarters, requires in terms of proper inclusion, through wide and sober embrace. Yet not many are fooled. The family and friends of Haresh Singh are not fooled by the snail’s pace of progress, by his death being condemned to the dark corner of a lower order priority. While there are many in this society who view the murder of Haresh Singh as something to be dealt with separately and in its own time and on its own merits, there can be no separation of his horrible death, from that of the two murders that occurred in Cotton Tree. It is now widely accepted that those savage and harrowing murders served as the catalyst that directly contributed to his passing. We go to great lengths to emphasise that, if only to make it clear that it is not up for discussion, or something to be treated casually.
We take this stance, because the pain of the family and those who knew him well enough are so strong. Strong enough to compel coming out in public protest to keep his falling front and centre, which places responsibility on all Guyanese that Haresh Singh does not degrade to an after-thought or unsolved mystery. Or that unwelcomed reminders of his murder are preferred to be kept on the sidelines, the farther the better. Though some may be quickly ready to push his death in the backyard of collateral damage, he is not seen as merely that by his family. He must be more than just another criminal statistic; and that must not be left to only his family. He must be seen as immovably attached to the senselessness that raged along the West Berbice roads and communities for what seemed like an eternity.
Many people in this country, some thoughtful and principled, others questionable as to both, were quick to articulate peacefully and assertively, their rage, disgust, and deep-seated revulsion at what happened to the two Henry youths brutalised and cut down in their untouched prime. That was absolutely right, and sentiments with which we identify strongly. By the same standard, the associated death of Haresh Singh is due the same urgency, the same national footing, the same outpourings of sustained outrage, and from all quarters. There have been three victims of terrible wrongdoings. We are further unhealed because of those. It is the responsibility of all Guyanese to not let the family of Haresh Singh believe that they have been abandoned and are all alone in their quest for justice and closure. It is what we call for, push for, and plead for, so that we can all face each other, comfortable that the many sordid chapters of those three unforgettable murders have been examined, ventilated, and closed with justice prevailing.
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