Nov 07, 2022 Editorial
Kaieteur News – It is Road Safety Month, and Guyanese are reminded of how dangerous, even deadly, travelling on our roads can be. It could be in the city or a rural area, and the life and limb of young and old are endangered. There are two major contributory factors, speeding drivers and drunk drivers. In both situations, those behind the wheel engage in what is reckless and destructive to themselves and anyone in their vicinity. This is a severe problem in Guyana, and one that does not look like it has any end in sight.
The Traffic Department of the Guyana Police Force (GPF) has done its part, through informing citizens of the need to exercise greater care, more discipline, and with regard for others. The advice of the GPF has largely fallen on deaf ears, given the continuing stream of accidents and, too frequently, road fatalities. Citizens are seriously injured, breadwinners killed, and survivors left hanging by a thread, and managing however they can. We are not equipped, as yet, to deal with some of the horrible injuries that are caused by accidents on the road, since we lack extensive facilities and skills to handle the carnage that crushes bone, body, and life itself. Concerned Guyanese have lent their voices, given of their time and energies, to shed light on the dangers of speeding and drunk driving, but again with little success for their efforts.
We highlight road safety and road wreckage, and the great costs to property and body, and to use such circumstances to speak to an environment beyond our roads. It is people operating above of our streets, who are even more dangerous than drunk or speeding drivers. In fact, we take the position that because the entire nation could be endangered in many ways, and pays the bitterest of prices the men responsible are potentially deadlier than those who drive dangerously on our roads.
These would be the Leaders in this PPP/C Government, who captain our national oil vessel. Because of their reckless actions, their resistance to listening, hearing, and acting appropriately, and their hostility to those who call them out on our national oil journey, these men, these Leaders, pose a greater danger to all Guyanese. It is more than any speeding minibus driver, reckless truck driver, and drunk and out of control vehicle driver (of any type), through the decisions they make, the things they do, and those that they refuse to do.
When Leaders in this PPP/C Government race at breakneck speeds with oil production when we, including themselves, know so little about the oil industry, how it works, what are its tricks, and how we need to protect ourselves, there is the great danger that severe injuries of different kinds will follow. There are financial injuries which the foreign oil companies can and will inflict upon us, and of which we are ignorant. It makes sense, therefore, for Government and Leaders to slowdown to get feet wet, and for them to be able to wrap their minds around the complexities of a demanding and sophisticated business.
Further, when Guyana rushes forward as rapidly as it has done, then the oil companies are given the go ahead to speed up processes and practices to the point where safety becomes secondary. Just as how speeding road users throw caution to the winds and cut corners, only to end up badly wounded or kill others, this is what the PPP/C Government practices. The risk, the probability, of a disastrous oil spill is sharply higher at accelerated production levels. There is potentially untold danger to our environment and future, to that of our tourism-dependent neighbors and their way of life, and there could be the likelihood of this oil meaning nothing to us due to national bankruptcy hanging over our heads. Guyana would be like a man that has a Mercedes, but who has injured himself so badly that he can’t drive it anymore, experience its joys anymore.
Leaders in the PPP/C Government must slow down, they must not be so drunk from power. They must learn, and discipline themselves to listen and observe for the betterment of all. They must cease being the most dangerous people in Guyana.
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