Last Updated on Thursday, 25 June 2020, 16:41 by Writer
Prime Minister Moses Nagamootoo has charged that there is fresh foreign interference in Guyana’s elections as part of overall efforts being made to topple the Nicolás Maduro administration in Venezuela where there is a worsening political and economic crisis.
“Suddenly, you have a change of geo-strategic focus by a big power who has an agenda, a regime change in a nearby country with which we have diplomatic relations but we don’t have friendly relations, Venezuela, and so Guyana has been used as collateral damage in an obsession to effect a regime change in a neighbouring country” Nagamootoo said on the Facebook Page of A Partnership for National Unity+Alliance For Change (APNU+AFC).
Nagamootoo, said as Prime Minister of a “sovereign country”, he was offended that Guyana was being used and his coalition was being targeted although it came to power in free, fair and credible elections in the 2015 elections.
“You have foreign powers using us as a pawn in a geo-strategic game that that they have mapped out in their own interest. It may be good if that serve their geo-political interest but that does not give them a right to interfere in our internal affairs to such an extent that they have created a problem and they have tried to influence the outcome of these elections,” said Nagamootoo, a former long-serving executive member of the then Marxist-Leninist People’s Progressive Party (PPP).
That was in clear reference to persistent calls by the United States, Britain, Canada, European Union, Commonwealth, Organisation of American States and the Caribbean Community for the national vote recount data to be used to declare final results of the March 2, 2020 polls that would effectively see the People’s Progressive Party (PPP) being declared the winner.
In fact, the OAS had named the PPP as the winner based on the recount, but after last Monday’s Guyana Court of Appeal ruling that more votes cast means more valid votes cast and should read together with provisions of the recount order to ensure there is a credible election, the Chief Elections Officer, Keith Lowenfield presented a report containing “valid and credible” results that showed A Partnership for National Unity+Alliance For Change (APNU+AFC) won with 33 seats, PPP 31 and three small combined parties with one seat.
About three years ago, the United States (US) for the first time openly recognised that Guyana’s territory includes the Essequibo Region which Venezuela claims as hers. Within the last 15 years , at least two seismic vessels that had been collecting data for major American oil companies- Anadarko and ExxonMobil- had been intercepted by Venezuela’s Navy.
Nagamootoo also accused the PPP of hiring foreign companies such as Cambridge Analytica to mine Social Media data and target segments of the population with appropriate messages as well as Mercury Public Affairs that conducted lobbying among American lawmakers, policymakers, companies and international organisations to “influence regime change.” “That’s a company that we are dealing with right now that has close connection with leaders of the Republican Party and Republican administration in the United States. They are not denying that because we have the names of several of the directors of the company, Mercury, that has been retained by (PPP General Secretary Bharrat) Jagdeo,” he said.
The Prime Minister raised questions about whether companies had helped pay Mercury Public Affairs.
Nagamootoo cautioned that the US might have walked into a trap by allowing the communist-oriented PPP to deceive them that they are an ally, while in reality they are more closely knit with the Nicolas Maduro administration. “We believe that that is why we have had this geopolitical tragedy of the Western countries coming on board to support a friend in the Western Hemisphere that they need to interfere in their backyard and to take control of the Government of Guyana,” he said.
The Prime Minister assailed the Western Nations’ alleged intervention in Guyana’s electoral process, calling it “obscene” and damaging. He called on them to back off.
APNU+AFC has also hired an American lobbying firm. JJ&B LLC, whose mandate includes portraying the PPP as criminal and racist as well as part of an alliance with Venezuela, China and Russia to control a huge chunk of natural resources.