Last Updated on Friday, 26 May 2023, 14:58 by Denis Chabrol
by GHK Lall
It is always a source of surprise at some of the things that come out of Vice President, Dr. Bharat Jagdeo’s head via his mouth. To think that a former head of state would harbor such fears, and then compound his anxieties by publicly uttering them is nothing less than astonishing. In this instance it has to do with recommendations by the European Union in the post 2020 election period (“Jagdeo concerned that civil society, opposition using international conventions to target government” -Demerara Waves, May 25, 2023).
I doubt that a man as crafty as the Vice President has taken the full measure of what he said, the depth of what he represented so earnestly, but so revealingly. Forget the hallowed EU, here are a few recommendations of my own. Whatever the international recommendations may be, let them be incorporated into the laws of Guyana. Who cares about what mischief, what misuse, what mangling, anybody can do with them? It could be civil society, or the churches, or the opposition, and it would not matter. It would not matter a damn because the leadership of the government is true and ethical and trusted, and there are shoals of evidence to bolster such a claim. That would be the first rock solid bulwark of political leadership confidence, and even with a slight trace of arrogance because they can represent all of it. It is only when there is rottenness in the leadership ranks relative to integrity in their actions and programs that there is trepidation about what this so-called civil society and nonexistent opposition can do.
Most, if not all of Guyana know, that civil society, with a few solitary exceptions in its composition, is firmly committed to the side of the PPP Government, and the rewards of being in the right way with the Vice President. To be otherwise is to pauperize oneself, and being so irresponsible as to self-isolate and convert self into an inviting target. I urge anyone from anywhere in the cross sections of Guyana to identify for the rest of this country, this formidable civil society body, groundswell, brigade, that is arrayed against the PPP Government. With oil present in copious quantities in Guyana today, very few are content with being on the outside of the self-enriching action. To be on the inside and to partake of the national patrimony gravy is to be in the good graces of the PPP Government, which means Dr. Jagdeo. To be so foolish as to be otherwise is the equivalent of individual, commercial, and financial kisses of death.
When I hear, therefore, this patented phoniness from the Vice President, it is clear that this manufactured fear about international conventions being used to undermine his PPP Government is the latest broad chunk of his registered, but endearing, identification with pretense, hypocrisy, and all-around dissembling of an incomparable kind. Before the esteemed Vice President, I lay this tiny sliver of native wisdom: if and when, and once the PPP Government (or any government and its leaders) is managing the business of the people in an honest and honorable, then there is nothing to fear, not even palpable, distinctive, overwhelming fear itself. Take that fear and shove it; shove a sock in it.
Regarding the PNC opposition (or any such creature) making hay with international conventions in the domestic arena, to the detriment of the PPP Government, there are a couple of things to be said. First, that would be the day, as the opposition is not a shadow, it is a myth, even a mirage. There is none in Guyana. Second, and again, once the PPP Government (and brother Jagdeo) has compiled an unchallengeable record for clean governance, then any and all are free to take their best shot. They are sure to come up empty, for there would be nothing to reveal, not a speck of misstep that embarrasses, not one whit of evidence that condemns the PPP Government, or the Vice President. It is only when it is otherwise, and undeniably so, that the government’s brass band, with Dr. Jagdeo as tortured lead vocalist is forced to resort to his now copyrighted verbal gimmickries and oral wizardries. He has now become a recognizable sophist in his right, a full-out phony when he seeks to hide, or take Guyanese for a ride.
For emphasis, I assert for the benefit of all everywhere, when there is clean governance with clean financing, clean leadership, clean records, and clean standards, then there would be no need for Dr. Jagdeo’s fearful and painful associations with what is truthful and principled. These escapist’s exploits of the Vice President have now been recognized far and wide, including by the international community, as an inseparable hallmark of his leadership attributes. His efforts to delay or thwart genuine reforms in several areas highlight his hypocrisies, for they expose the highly questionable, often incestuous, and cozy underground relationships of the PPP Government. Looking at the issue of campaign financing alone, there should be no uneasiness about the opposition could do, since the PNC also obtains considerable funding from the same sources as the PPP.
Remember what is said about quacks and their quacking. It is either a duck; or somebody doing a wonderful imitation of one by ducking the serious issues.