Freddie kissoon column
Wednesday, January 19, 2022
Kaieteur News – I said to my wife in the kitchen last week that I want to “call it George.” I don’t know if young Guyanese use that common saying. It denotes the decision to leave or end something or suddenly bring something to an end.
The saying was popular in my days growing up in Wortmanville. I would like to call it quits after 34 years of column-writing. But there is an enormous but. When I see what is spoken and written each day, each night in this country, I really have to sit on the seawall with my dog in my arms and think long and hard about “calling it George.”
It is not that I want to continue this part of my life into old age but if the evils of the country I live in, and give all my life to, are not exorcised then life’s miseries will kill this land. Since the attempted rigged election failed in July 2020, I have never seen the ubiquity of anti-Indian sentiments as I see unfolding.
I was too young when the Wismar massacre occurred to understand anti-Indian passion. I saw it between 2002 and 2006 when an anti-Indian conspiracy unfolded and took up residency in Buxton. But the attitude of disliking Indians was never pronounced back then as it is now. Many civil society groups and decent middle class persons that hated what was taking place in Buxton are now firmly entrenched in their psychological resentment of the return to the PPP to power.
They didn’t want it to happen in March 2020. I cannot identify any women group, any civil society organisation, and prominent middle class non-Indians in Guyana today that is not part of a silent and invisible conspiracy to denounce the present government. Even the Indians in civil society organisations and in the women groups who are Christians are anti-government. The scenario also takes in sections of whose vitriol is frenetic and extremist because of class and colour.
In this ambience, is this the time to call it George? I don’t know. But I am seeing dangerous vulgarities that will make me take that reflection to the seawall. Two political deceptions happened last week that require some reflection. I stated that I saw an interviewer telling David Hinds he is a good example of struggle. I did that yesterday, suffice it to say that Hinds isn’t struggling for the freedom of the people of Guyana but his own people whatever that means. I think you know what that means.
The other is an output from Henry Jeffrey when in an interview with David Hinds he said Aubrey Norton has to address the grievances African Guyanese have about what the PPP is doing to them. PNC embracers are advocating that Norton must confront the PPP. In both cases, propaganda and emotions replace arguments based on facts.
First, I don’t think David Hinds and Henry Jeffrey speak for African Guyanese. Secondly, Norton has to know that the era of mo fyaah/slo fyaah is over. It was born in special circumstances and had endurance because of the presence of a former PNC president, Desmond Hoyte, who had the resources to sustain it.
Such special circumstances cannot be reenacted. More than 20 years have passed and the type of African youths that threw gasoline on mo fyaah/slo fyaah in 1997 is not the type that thinks like that today. Norton recently tried to lead a march from the Square of the Revolution to the bustling streets on the inner city and it failed.
Jeffrey is erroneous when he said that PNC delegates elected Norton to channel into reality the feelings of African Guyanese about the government. The PNC got 215,000 votes from the 2020 election. Almost 95 percent of that came from African Guyanese. Norton was elected by 967 persons. Are those 967 speaking for the 215,000? More than 50 percent of the delegates did not vote.
Those who voted had absolutely no choice. It was either Harmon or Norton and they voted against the massive unpopular image of Joseph Harmon. You are better able to access the strengths and weaknesses of a candidate when the competition is strong. A perfect example was the battle for the chairperson’s seat. The fight was between four persons with different style of politics.
The war was simply Norton versus Harmon. Because of that factor, it is nonsensical to say what the mental intentions of the voters toward Norton were. If a handful of persons want Norton to return to mo fyaah/slo fyaah, then when Norton looks over his shoulders, his army won’t be there.
(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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