This is why we are where we are: economics over welfare of citizens

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Dear Editor

It is evident that the nation is now in the throes of a life and death struggle as it continues to grapple with a daily surge of not only particularly the number of infections, but also the high death rates as a result of the still raging pandemic.

Not surprising, given the fact that the horse bolted from the stable, after the infamous date of August 2, 2020, installation of the PPP/C regime; for after this date, the good times rolled again, with the fetes at full blast from that night; followed by opening of the bars and restaurants; eating houses; businesses etc. Nothing could have been more reckless than a National Culture Centre packed like sardines for an inauguration event.

Of course, there were the expected political  criticisms of the former coalition government’s management of the then pandemic, which subsequently saw a total disbandment of the then Covid – 19 Task Force, and the apparent removal of both the Chief and Deputy Medical Officers who played pivotal roles in the early stages of the management of the Covid – virus.


A significant departure was also the, knowledgeable and experienced Dr. William Addo Krow, whose  guidance and advice with regard establishing the model for management of the pandemic, played a pivotal role in ensuring the low levels of infections, and of course, deaths up to August 31, 2020. His daily admonishment to take effective action when it was very early in the evolvement of the virus in Guyana was what would have saved us from a Brazil or Ecuador nightmare scenario of an already fragile health system being overwhelmed.

Yet, he left, without perhaps, not even a word of public gratitude from a bunch of Covid – 19 jokers masquerading as advisers, who began playing politics with a pandemic, which mounting numbers are frightening, with a daily body count which is a reflection of the political asininity of the PPP/C regime  at work.

For instance, a few nights ago, there was Jagdeo making inferences about coalition politicians issuing contrary advice to its supporters about becoming vaccinated, but that party leader and former president, David Granger would have already received his jab. This claim is as malicious as it is also devious, since former minister, Dr. Karen Cummings would have been making public appeals via ch. 9, for citizens to become vaccinated – pre dating Jagdeo’s false claim.

There can be no doubt that Jagdeo has to find an excuse ,or, better yet,  a lie to explain the tragedy of an out of control  pandemic which numbers could have  been easily  predicted, as rising from February, after a Christmas which witnessed uncontrolled economic activity, and an almost breakdown of the major survival protocols such as the wearing of masks. For all the PSC yapping  about adherence to protocols etc. for the last Xmas shopping season, a visit to the downtown shopping centres reflected a vastly different scenario – the making of money; to hell with monitoring the inflow of shoppers, although some businesses did.

Therefore, the daily tragedy which has now become a frightening norm, is as a result of the criminal laissez faire manner of the regime, whose known position of placing economics above humans, has resulted in the following:

A reduction of the fear of the potency of the virus by many citizens. One only has to observe the still multi persons gathering in the main regions of Guyana, particularly in Region Four.
Public transportation, which many had been carrying a reduced number of travellers, have now resorted to the usual quota, because of the task force people, or whoever is responsible, giving the green light for travel as usual. Not even the immediate sanitization that had been commonly done after every journey is carried out.
Though masks are worn in general, there are still too many persons, for example, who are travelling aboard public transportation without wearing such a protection. Many of this particular category can be asymptomatic, becoming super spreaders.

The home isolation cannot be relied on as being adhered to, given the fact that most of these persons, are going to return almost immediately to whatever their daily endeavours are, mostly because of economic reasons. In this way, the virus will continue to spread. The question is: who is supervising this home quarantine category, as done in other jurisdictions?
Finally, it is clear that the regime is putting its cards on the vaccination process for the creation of herd immunity as a means of lessening the spread of the virus. However, by the time a substantial number of our population has been fully vaccinated, given the present rapidity of the spread of the virus, along with the rising mortality, there will be an astronomical number of citizens who would have also recovered from the virus but who’s physical may have suffered some degree of impairment. The latter, is an ever since emerging issue which is being ignored by the local health authorities.

Editor, that there is great laxity in the manner of how the state is managing the pandemic is undisputed. Clearly, though it is a case of each Ω≈of us becoming our brother’s keeper, as a means of survival, the latter is certainly absent from the instant thoughts of too many of our citizens. It is simply a case of risky socio-cultural habits at this time, proving too hard to control, much less die. Such is further exacerbated by a regime which philosophy of economics before the welfare of people, betrays the fact that under the present circumstances it has a duty to protect the citizenry, by means of a consistency of both enforcement and some degree of lockdown. It is the failure to do so that has brought us to where we are at this very sad moment.


Shawn James

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