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|In a fiery delivery at the A Partnership for National Unity and Alliance For Change (APNU+AFC) and Working People’s Alliance (WPA) Rally on Tuesday, Dr. David Hinds accused the People’s Progressive Party/Civic (PPP/C) of talking about democracy when they do not practice racial and political democracy.
Delving into African history in the immediate post slavery society, he said the forebears of African Guyanese bought lands and created villages and they divided the lands equally among the owners. “This is what you call democracy, equality and equity.” Crediting Africans as the pioneers of Guyana’s democracy, Hinds, a WPA Executive member, said the party wants all Guyanese to get a share of the oil money.
Signalling a warning shot that Africans must benefit because this group’s ancestors built the foundation of Guyana with bare hands and free labour, and would have been entitled were they alive, the WPA member said their descendants have to be at the table. And if Africans are not at the table? Hinds thundered: “Well, kick down the table!”
Admitting his presence and speech at the rally were not intended to be politically correct but that of registering the start of the long trek to reclaim our freedom, he raised a series of issues he said ought to be of concern to Africans and all Guyanese.
The WPA, he expounded, has called for 10 per cent of the oil revenue to be divided equally among the 201,000 households in Guyana and people will get the same amount of money regardless of race or socioeconomic status.
“WPA wants to target everybody, mindful that we live in a land that is racialised.” Making the case using examples, Hinds said Guyanese know when they are talking about sugar workers, we are talking about East Indians; when we are talking about police and public servants, we are talking about Africans; when you are talking about the Hinterland, we mean Amerindians (First peoples); and so forth.
The PPP’s racist management of the state is evident for all to see, he charged. “When you give sugar workers a $250,000 cash grant and public servants get a three (3) per cent we know you racist,” Hinds blasted.
Invoking the spirit of the African ancestors, the politician called on them to “place the sword of justice, equality and freedom in our hands. Help us to use it well because we are going to be at the table for our share of the oil money.”
Pivoting to members of the Guyana Police Force who were present at the rally, carrying out official duties, an appeal was made to them to “stop shooting your brothers, your own people.” The police were told by Hinds that “we are proud of you because you are there to protect us, but we will not be proud of those who kill our people because of their race.”
The Force has once again been attracting negative publicity with the resurgence of extrajudicial killings in the last two years under the Irfaan Ali government. This was practically non-existent during the five years of the APNU+AFC coalition government.
Continuing to admonish and appeal to the better and legal judgment of law enforcement, who are Africans in the majority, Hinds advised that “we have to put a stop to it, and only we can put a stop to it. May our ancestors give us the strength to push back against police brutality.”
Lambasting the government for politicising the Force, the WPA executive warned that “we have to stop it.” On the matter of violence, he pointed fingers at the government and police who he accused of committing violence against the people, as he commended the family of 23-year-old Quindon Bacchus for taking a stand for justice after he was allegedly murdered by a member of the Force. Lance Corporal Kristoff DeNobrega is before the court on said charge.
Black does not mean inferiority, indignity, it must mean dignity; we are equal to everyone; we are not better than anyone and none is better than us, the politician passionately articulated. “All [Africans] want is equality, justice…[and]…we are no longer gonna be fearful from tonight. We are sounding the bell, the trek has begun…the struggle is going to be taken to another level, the economic violence is going to stop!”