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The Social Justice Initiative representing Guyanese Americans, Guyanese residing in America along with other party supporters in the diaspora, hereby joins the public outcry for change in the leadership of the PNCR. The plight party members and supporters in Guyana currently face, demands a change in party leadership.
There is a growing groundswell of dissatisfaction with David Granger as leader of the Party. This dissatisfaction is brewing in the Party’s support base throughout the ten electoral regions in Guyana, especially in region four, and has reached across the waters into the diaspora. The growing dissatisfaction has now reached boiling point giving birth to the call for the Party’s long-overdue Biennial Delegates Congress, the forum at which changes to the leadership of the Party are made.
Mr. Granger has retreated from the spotlight into virtual obscurity, while party members, their extended families and associates continue to face threats and abuse by PPP officials and operatives in every aspect of their daily lives. This reality is the fuel that propels the groundswell against the Granger’s leadership.
WHY CHANGE IN LEADERSHIP
There is an immediate need for a different type of leader for the party. A leader who is able not only to resist the onslaught of the PPP government, but lead the charge in dismantling the authoritarian-bound political mechanism that is hell bent on marginalising black folks by stripping away their democratic, human, civil rights, and opportunities for a peaceful and prosperous life in the country. History will record the good Mr Granger has done while in office; it will not go unnoticed. However, the events that led us to where we are today cannot be overlooked or downplayed. There are too many unanswered questions that Mr. Granger seems unwilling to address in a meaningful way. He has not put his voice nor added his presence to the life-changing circumstances the PPP government forced unto PNCR members and supporters.
Time is no longer on our side. It is approaching one year since declaration and the PPP has done a great deal already, in pursuit of its ultimate objectives. If the PPP is given any more time, our party and its supporters will not be able to stop the inevitable from this evil government. We would not be in this position but for the weak leadership of Mr. Granger. This is our last chance at redemption before extinction.
We have all made contributions to the financial well-being of the party in various ways as members or supporters. We did so with an expectation from the leader, when that expectation was not fulfilled, we were expected to ask questions especially when no explanation was given or was forthcoming from the leader. This is the reality the party base is facing. Matters were further compounded when Mr. Granger surreptitiously maneuvered himself away from opposition leader and withdrew into obscurity holding on to the party leadership while remaining silent on all the tough questions. Let us not bury our heads in the sand and risk a permanent fracture in the Party’s foundation as a historically important political institution in the country.
The way forward is for a different leadership, and the cry for new leadership is garnering support from within the party infrastructure. It must be noted that this is not about removing Mr. Granger from office, rather it is about preserving the integrity of the Party’s future, by replacing him with someone better suited for today’s politics in Guyana. The CEC and the General Council are obligated to schedule Delegates Congress in the interest of democracy. Let us deal with the outcome of a vote at Congress before it is too late. Today’s politics require a certain type of politician whom most feel Mr Granger is not. If however, Mr Granger feels he can win reelection he must avail himself to the Delegates vote at Congress and let the chips fall where they may.
SUPREMACY OF THE PARTY
The viability and integrity of the Party remain supreme over any elected office. With every passing day, the support base of the party continues to erode from mounting pressure brought to bear from the PPP administration while the party they voted for seems paralyzed in its response to the situation. They are enduring a feeling of helplessness and need a leader who understands their plight and is willing to defend their cause.
THE SUPREME AUTHORITY
The 2020 Party Delegates Congress is now eleven months overdue and since Congress is the constitutional forum at which the Party Leader is elected by popular delegates vote, every effort should be made to hold Congress without further delay. Mr Granger will then have a fair chance at validation as leader or face a change of heart on the part of his constituents. The Biennial Delegates Congress provides for a sitting leader to return to the party members for a vote of confidence (or no-confidence) based on performance during the previous two years between Congresses. Under different circumstances, Article 15 (1) of the party’s Constitution may be suspended for reasons of Covid-19, not so now, given the leadership crisis the party faces. In addition, the CEC has the option to invoke the provisions of Article 15 (5) Special Delegates Congress “on its own motion” to make Congress a reality. It can be agreed upon to strip down the agenda to exclude most of the usual items and focus exclusively on the leadership vote, doing so digitally (Zoom) from within each of the ten regions in Guyana along with NAR. This can be an appropriate alternative to postponing or delaying Congress any longer.
Again, the outcry is more about the survival of the Party as a viable entity, under the leadership of a fitting candidate capable of leading the party in these critical political times and into the future, and less about removing Mr. Granger.
A Social Justice Initiative
A Guyanese American Political Think-Tank
Brooklyn New York