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Some of us are by nature super-optimists and can therefore keep our heads above the water even when there is turbulence and sharks.
That philosophy of optimism is being tested as one listens to the news and statements from the President and others. I am satisfied that the call made in the early 90s made sense and perhaps is our only hope.
That was for a moral and spiritual revival, necessary even as the philosophy of the Optimists seems to dwindle. First, I have already written about the lawlessness, nonsense and low-level to which our highest forum, Parliament has descended, where our Speaker appears out of his depth or is he just confused?
We must thank Lincoln Lewis, GSK Lall and Kit Nascimento for their timely contributions. Next, we have the propaganda gurus in high gear as we observe the anniversary of the 2020 General Elections, and out of this we now have a new Award in our National Award system, “The Order of Democracy.”
Is this a new Order?
Of course, we have the lengthy statements about Elections 2020 and except for a brief sentence, the source of the problem is ignored, which is going into an Election with an imperfect list and the country buckling under a dictum to suspend house to house registration.
The root of the problem and the opening of the flood-gates. Why and how this occurred is of course another story. Were we, all of us, the victims of the machinations of powerful forces, internal and external?
Our youngsters must know and be wary of those who use the word ‘democracy’ with such ease. Democracy happens to be one of those chameleon words that changes its meaning by and to different people.
It is this difficulty, which has led to the many uprisings in all of human history. In Guyana today, we have persons committing rape and violating the rights of our women; additionally, they escape from lawful custody and later secure a small bail and let loose on our people. Even the aged not being spared of these evil-doers. For these devilish persons, it is business as usual. We witness in silence the assault on businesses owned by the other people who must remain forever and ever at the bottom of the ladder.
We gladly receive vaccines from the People Republic of China but haplessly, violate a commitment to the one China policy agreed to since 1974.
We have contractors building highways but not being responsible for traffic control and traffic diversions, contrary to the usual requirements of the contract. So the Guyana Police Force (Traffic Department) as we notice on Mandela Avenue must perform those duties. We propose that in dealing with oil and gas, we set aside political differences and only work for the good of Guyana, but are our current Leaders listening?
When the PNC and PPP Leaders agreed to the nationalization of Bauxite and Sugar – the commanding heights of our economy, it was a step to the right direction, call it critical support or anything else, call it in support of socialism or anything else, it’s a lesson that today we need to examine and with wisdom and adjustment put in place.
Some of our political leaders are so short-sighted that we hug and kiss representatives of powerful nations that seem to determine our electoral process and as we noted after November 2020, didn’t employ the same philosophy, when Mike Pompeo, representing President Donald Trump, visit Guyana came to tell a President to step aside, but didn’t tell his own President, after their Elections in November 2020, to step aside.
Guyanese, young and old, must learn from this old saying “different strokes for different folk.”
We must settle down and not talk of one Guyana while doing things that create division, not unlike the old imperial strategy of ‘divide and rule,’ but let us behave in a manner where there is the same justice for all of us, whether they are young men from West Coast Berbice or victims of violence on the Corentyne.
Our next generation must not see as we have seen our natural resources exploited and the ordinary Guyanese not being the main beneficiaries. This weekend we celebrate as we have done for many years, ‘GHANA DAY.’ (March 6)
Ghana, a country with similarities and lessons to be learnt, particularly, in the complex arena of politics and governance.
I conclude with this interesting statement at the beginning of a book written by Janda, Berry and Goldman, The Challenge of Democracy (US), 2nd Edition “Which is better to live under a Government that allows individuals complete freedom to do whatever they please or under one that enforces strict law and order?”
Which is better to allow businesses and private clubs to discriminate in choosing their customers and members or to pass laws to enforce equality among races and sexes?”
In Guyana, we must be careful not to be consumed by policies which allow for runaway private sector or runaway propaganda machinery and the persecution of one set of citizens, even as we are in the midst of the UN sponsored 7th Year of International Decade for People of African Descent. (Recognition, Justice and Development).