Latest update March 22nd, 2023 12:59 AM
Mar 10, 2023 Editorial
Kaieteur News – Vice President, Bharat Jagdeo may be congratulating himself that he has succeeded in wrapping another of his now patented blindfolds around the eyes and noses of Guyanese.
The Vice President should be forgiven for thinking that he prevents Guyanese from seeing and smelling his tricks and antics. On both counts, he could not be more wrong, as more citizens are getting wiser to his slick ways, including people who once strongly believed in him. The latest caper from Vice President Jagdeo, when the issue of full coverage liability (insurance) was raised, is check with the EPA (Environmental Protection Agency). True, Guyana’s EPA has the responsibility, but there is a big ‘if’ as to whether it has the power to go after ExxonMobil on this matter, given what has been done to it by this PPP/C Government. A hollow shell it is, an entity that is widely mocked, through to no fault of its own, for this is what it has been reduced to: a football, and a punching bag.
It is not the first time that Jagdeo has had the wits to pass off touchy, hotly pursued, issues, such as insurance, to the helpless EPA. Helpless, because unless the Vice President himself overcomes the resistance of ExxonMobil for ownership of full liability coverage in the event of an oil spill at its offshore wells, then the EPA is ripe for pushing around, and being made into a convenient whipping boy. It is not accidental, this handoff by Jagdeo, for it has been seen before, when he was touting getting a mysterious “acknowledgement” from ExxonMobil for up to US$2B in insurance.
He also did this when another issue was put before him on a nonoil segment of the natural resources umbrella. The issue was the release of the mining contracts that the PPPC Government signed on behalf of Guyanese with several foreign companies. In that instance, Bharat Jagdeo passed questioners over (‘talk to Vick’) to Vickram Bharrat, Natural Resources Minister. The expectation was that the Minister, who most likely was caught off-guard at being left to hold the baby, would release the contracts. Guyanese are still waiting weeks later. Before that, it was the GRA and GGMC, and with the same results. That is, whenever Bharat Jagdeo makes promises on the PPPC Government’s handling of vital natural resources sectors of the economy, Guyanese are being taken for a clever ride.
It is becoming increasingly clearer that this is the standard adopted by Jagdeo, a former President, now holding more power under a different title. Any study of how he conducts himself during his carefully spread apart appearances before the independent, mainstream media reveals the antics in which he engages. They are so transparent due to overuse that even an unlearned young school child can see through them, viz., his antics and he himself.
First, he now speaks uncharacteristically slowly and at length. This is to absorb as much time as possible out of his press conferences, so that question and answer sessions suffer from lack of time. Second, he pretends to work himself into a state of righteous anger, through a cunning series of ravings and rantings, about how he and his PPP/C Government are being treated to different standards. Third, he accuses others of storytelling of a certain kind, lying, nitpicking, and waiting in ambush to pounce. All the time, he is about one tactic only: to rundown the clock, so that he does not have to answer too much. Last, after he has given the docile and fawning in his group enough Facebook material (for their own bashing), he then slips in something such as ‘check with the EPA’ or ‘that should have been done already.’
Like we at this publication have been saying for the longest time: Bharat Jagdeo looks in his mirror and tells himself that he is the cleverest of them all. When he does that last minute passing-of-the-ball to the EPA, he has just positioned himself to say later that he did address the matter, and that it is with the public servants, hence out of his hands. This is either method to madness, or possibly the early stages of something resembling what is a political sickness.
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