Jun 19, 2021 Letters
Harmon’s anti-vaccine posture is really anti-nation. This man seems ruthless and his recent utterances confirm his identity, or lack thereof, as a person who heads the Opposition, A Partnership for National Unity+Alliance For Change (APNU+AFC).
Let me categorically state that his outbursts remain scientifically and medically unsubstantiated and as regards questioning the credibility of the operations of the Government, again, there is no evidence that he can bring to the discussion.
It is common knowledge, gleaned from the World Health Organization and even from personal talks with medical professionals that “Vaccination has been shown to contribute to reducing deaths and severe illness from COVID-19, and to reduce the transmission of COVID-19. Vaccinating as many people as possible and reducing the spread of disease remain important.”
I add that in the United States of America, the citizens know that “Vaccines to prevent coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19) are perhaps the best hope for ending the pandemic.” And there is no discrimination against any particular vaccine. In fact, on the issue of the Sputnik, in use here in Guyana, I point Harmon to a February BBC release.
The details show that “Russia’s Sputnik V coronavirus vaccine gives around 92 percent protection against COVID-19.” The article explains that “It (the Sputnik vaccine) has also been deemed to be safe, offering complete protection against hospitalisation and death. That is why it has joined the ranks of proven vaccines alongside Pfizer, Oxford/AstraZeneca, Moderna and Janssen.
Talk about a baseless pronouncement from a scientific perspective, and fictitious in its claims, regarding sourcing and authenticity, and we have Harmon in a nut shell.
Readers, I want to show the contrasting nature of Mr. Harmon against that of President Irfaan Ali. So, off to Harmon now.
This Opposition Head has always been at the forefront of some of the most insalubrious situations in Guyana. He led the APNU+AFC’s claim that the Coalition won the March 02, 2020 Guyana Elections, even stating that they possessed the Statements of Polls (SoPs) to prove victory. Harmon and his cronies then tried to stop the Recount of the votes, right after the APNU+AFC had brokered the same (in their efforts to steal the election by not using the SoPs). This too did not materialise, and the strategy went towards ‘figmenting/conjuring up elections anomalies’ that the court frowned upon.
Let me add the September 2020 case when “The badly-mutilated bodies of 16-year-old Isaiah Henry and 19-year-old Joel Henry of West Coast Berbice (WCB) were discovered almost one day after they went missing.” Harmon incited racial retaliation by blaming the People’s Progressive Party/Civic for this still unsolved crime. He is on record as calling the protest that ensued, mainly because of his racist rhetoric, “a struggle against oppression, a struggle against a fraudulent government.” He went on and stated that “too many black youths are vanishing in the same way that cousins Isaiah and Joel Henry were killed and mutilated.” What lies? Preposterous! Dangerous! Riotous!
So, Harmon’s rantings regarding COVID-19 vaccines are consistent with his soiled core being. In questioning the authenticity of the Sputnik V vaccines and calling for them to be put on hold is to get another glimpse of his dirty side.
He is disingenuous and characterised by dissimulation. He cannot refute the validity and efficacy of the vaccines obtained, so, he tries to discredit the process by which the vaccines were procured, naively using that to seek to cast doubt on the efficacy of the vaccines. I point to his basic need for self-preservation, in that he and all his colleagues in leadership have taken the very vaccines. Indeed, the man is willing and ready to use his supporters as collateral in his quest to score political points.
Now to President Dr. Irfaan Ali, who is the very opposite of Harmon.
As expected, and rightly so, President Dr. Irfaan Ali deemed the outburst by Opposition Leader Joseph Harmon, in relation to the Sputnik V vaccines as “shamefully reckless, selfish and against the interest of Guyana and Guyanese.” As the President noted, coming from Harmon, “This level of irresponsibility, this level of selfishness is beyond anything that a leader or someone who has prided himself with the values of leadership can demonstrate.”
We all know that the President and his Administration has been working extra hard “… to ensure that the population reach herd immunity.” For him and his team, when it comes to the nation’s well-being, nothing will be a barrier, as “they have explored all available avenues to save lives and to keep Guyanese out of harm’s way.”
In his own words, he reiterated that the “Government is going to explore all avenues to ensure we get our people vaccinated. (as) This is the only way we can get ahead of the curve and return Guyana to normalcy–and that position would not change.”
Ali added that “We tried countries directly, we tried developers directly, we tried manufacturers directly, and we tried diplomatic channels. We tried every single thing and we continue to try every single day.” Why? “There is no cost to protecting the lives of Guyanese and that is the only interest of the Government-that is my only interest.”
I therefore urge all of us, especially the ‘Harmonites and APNUites,’ to be realistic and ‘hurry up’ the vaccination process. It is the only option we have.
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