Scrambling to pull back every vote from the loss of its parliamentary majority in the 2011 general election, the Peoples Progressive Party Civic (PPPC) is attempting to alienate the electorate from the opposition along the lines of class.
General Secretary of the Marxist-oriented PPP, Clement Rohee told party faithful at a commemorative event in honour of late Presidents Cheddi and Janet Jagan that the opposition was of middle-class orientation.
Calling the opposition parliamentarians “bulb-heads” who believe that they are the brightest and most knowledgeable, he charged them with being removed from the ordinary working people. “This must be seen as part of the political middle-class arrogance or what would I describe as the bureaucratic bourgeoisie,” he said at the eveny held on Sunday at Babu John, Port Mourant.
After almost 30 years in opposition due to a combination of Western tolerance and rigged elections by the then governing Peoples National Congress (PNC), Dr. Cheddi Jagan returned to power in 1992. He had promised a lean and clean administration. But today, many critics accuse the administration of losing its working class orientation, bloating the executive and lavishing themselves in personal wealth since his death in 1997.
“The PPP/C in its twenty-eight years of governance has neglected the human resources of this nation; has abandoned the “lean and clean” governance promised by that party’s Founder Leader Dr. Cheddi Jagan; has shown no leadership in the pursuit of national unity and exhibited a total lack of benevolence towards the plight of the working man and woman in Guyana. In twenty eight years the PPP/C has divided this nation, eroded our values, and the quality of life of all Guyanese has been compromised,” stated the APNU in a release.
From all accounts, the PPP-Civic’s posture to regain its simple majority in the House is to admit that it has made mistakes and to establish a broad-left grouping of all progressive forces in the country.
“Comrades, we would be the first to admit that here is room for improvement. There is much more work to be done,” said Rohee.
Rohee, who said he spent the last five days on the ground on Berbice, acknowledged that several problems such as garbage collection, drainage and road improvements needed to be addressed.
The PPP, he said, has not given up on building a hydropower plant, modernizing the Cheddi Jagan International Airport and constructing a specialty hospital.
The PPP holds 32 seats in the House, while A Partnership for National Unity (APNU) has 26 and the Alliance For Change (AFC) seven.
The PPP is banking on its record in housing, education and economic stability as well as opposition budget cuts to key projects and the prevention of passage of amendments to the Anti Money Laundering and Countering of Financing Terrorism to regain votes that have gone to the AFC.
On the other hand, the AFC and APNU have been justifying their actions by arguing that there was need for proper accountability and better governance of the anti-money laundering archictecture.