Cheddi Jagan Research Centre’s sign replaced; Jagdeo warns coalition will pay political price

Last Updated on Friday, 30 December 2016, 19:22 by Denis Chabrol

In clear defiance of State apparatus, People’s Progressive Party (PPP) supporters put up back a Cheddi Jagan Reseach Centre less than one hour after Ministry of the Presidency workers clawed it off as part of steps to take possession of Red House.

And Opposition Leader, Bharrat Jagdeo signaled that the pulling down of the sign and efforts to evict the Centre from Red House located on High Street, Kingston, Georgetown would make for good political fodder in PPP strongholds. “To do this to Cheddi Jagan and his legacy is the height of indecency  and callousness  and this government will long be judged in the future for this act that it committed today (Friday, December 30, 2016) and what it’s seeking to do,” he said.

Jagan, a fighter for Guyana’s independence from British rule, is still revered mainly in the PPP’s East Indo-Guyanese support base.

Jagdeo slammed government for revoking the lease and moving to throw out the CJRC from Red House, once the official residence of then Premier and Founder-Leader of the People’s Progressive Party (PPP). “This is heinous, reprehensible act on the part of this government. They have so many things to deal with in this country than to come and do what they did here today (Friday) to forcibly eject the Cheddi Jagan Research Centre from this building,” said Jagdeo.

Another PPP parliamentarian, who did not want to be quoted, said the many  dissatisfied PPP supporters who did not vote at the May 2015 general elections have re-consolidated their support with the planned eviction of the Cheddi Jagan Research Centre from Red House.

Shortly after the sign was pulled down and a complaint was lodged with the police, Cheddi Jagan Research Centre officials were seen erecting the sign in a makeshift manner.

Attorney-at-Law, Anil Nandlall earlier Friday secured a High Court order on behalf of Cheddi Jagan Research Inc, blocking the Attorney General, Basil Williams or any agent of the State from removing any item or artifact from Red House. The matter comes up again next month by which time Williams and Nandlall will file responses to each other in court.

The PPP has in recent months been making a lot of political capital from several decisions by the Granger-led A Partnership for National Unity+ Alliance For Change (APNU+AFC) coalition government since assuming office more than 18 months ago.

They include an increase in  ministerial salaries, failure to pay a 20 percent salary increase to members of the disciplined services, failure to pay increased salaries to teachers, no tax-free one month salary to members of the Disciplined Services, Minister of State Joseph Harmon’s travels aboard a plane with top officials of Bai Shan Lin, increased taxes in the 2016 and 2017 national budgets, sole-sourced exorbitant rental of a now under-utilized pharmaceutical bond from a member of the People’s National Congress Reform (PNCR), closure of the Wales Estate that led to the retrenchment of numerous workers, the less than transparent arrangements for the construction of the D’urban Park area for Guyana’s 50th Independence celebration, the labelling of the trade union movement as impotent by Minister responsible for Labour Keith Scott, and the granting of fully-funded scholarships to two government ministers.