OPINION: Tacuma Ogunseye is wrong; Opposition forces must overcome the ordinary, be wiser

Last Updated on Sunday, 12 March 2023, 7:33 by Denis Chabrol

by GHK Lall

This is my position: Tacuma Ogunseye went too far.  He should know that without any objection from a nobody like me.  What he said, insinuated, or tabled distracted from his call.  I disagree with him, and that call that encircles the Joint Services, a huge section of it, cannot be condoned, leaving him on the carpet.  I absorb this passionate development in simmering, roiled Guyana, and approach from multiple angles.

First, a season of resistance, whether hour, day, or extended period, has much to recommend it, including underlying energy and circumstances.  More than Black Guyanese are troubled; growing fractions of Indian and Amerindian Guyanese (others) have come, and are coming, to the conclusion, that what the PPP Government says is at stark odds to the harsh realities of their experiences, the truths of their lives.  The President loses credibility, other than for diehards, induced cheerleaders, the indebted; they know, but are trapped.  The Vice President is recognized for who he really is deep down: too many deafening echoes, countless naked memories of LFS Burnham, which the Vice President surpasses by leaps and bounds.  The dark side of Guyana highlighted.  The environment, therefore, ripens towards what Mr. Ogunseye calls for, got carried away most troublingly.

For, second, should the Joint Services-a conspicuous section of it-become embroiled in the ugly, nasty, dirty politics of Guyana, then I believe that the downward spiral into open anarchy looms distinctively.  Anarchies are endless and uncontrollable.  This would leave us in a worse place than today, with rawer, deeper, and angrier division commanding the local political roosts, and leading us to the unthinkable.  This should be avoided at all costs; there are no winners, no salvaging pyrrhic victory.

Third, the WPA, of which Brother Tacuma is an inseparable ingredient, contributed significantly in a prior time when dictatorship reigned throughout Guyana.  The forces of right and for justice-admittedly raucous, boisterous, and pugnacious-prevailed, which brought us to today, three decades later.  Today there is a more rampant dictatorship in Guyana, compliments of the Vice President, a man who knows not the straight way, to whom the clean light is alien; even the President is overwhelmed.  Before, we had Burnham, and the WPA did its part.  Today, there is the Vice President, a leader with similar cagey, convulsing ambitions towards suspect greatness, but who makes Burnham look like a beginner.  The record of Burnham was when he was bad, he was really bad.  With the precedent of the Burnham era as context, and the WPA’s invaluable efforts to Guyana’s cause, the group and Mr. Ogunseye must parallel at a higher level their sterling efforts of years before.  It is not by the means, or the manner, that he hinted, expounded.

Fourth, and in contrast, the territory of this millennium calls for sophistication and subtlety.  Opposing forces in Guyana need to be wise and patient.  There is a need for solid traction locally, international recognition for genuine democratic convictions, and domestic inclusion that powers towards a common cause.  This common cause is what splits into the disfigured subsets that are so much of the norms of Guyanese life.  Leadership deceptions that require eradication.  Governance corruptions that demand reduction.  Racial, social, and financial exclusions that beg for attention, for relief, more of what remedies.  Any force of change, of reason, must possess the wisdom to rise above what lends so much to the clashing noises and reciprocal hates in this country.  The WPA was there before, as an agent of necessary, overdue change.  Its people did their part.  Now, there are more challenging parts to be addressed, and to be overcome in the keenest way possible.  A balancing act, it is.

Fifth, I caution, therefore, any barreling ahead to deliver broadsides to bludgeon into submission provokes official reactions.  Justifications are found for all manner of leadership perversities under the cover of law and order, constitution and the integrity of the people.  Guyanese may be fooled and misled, but the same people from the alphabet soup rescue squad know better, and for the simple reason that they know more of what really goes on here.  Like Burnham, the Vice President has persuaded himself that he is untouchable.  He could not be more wrong.  For, if the people who put him back together become more anxious about his excesses, he will go the Burnham way.  Down first, then out; and there is no commodity on earth that would insulate.

Finally, we all do well to remember that the power of disappointed, disgusted, and disturbed people is what sways the day.  That power has a language of its own, and an unconquerable resilience, which even foreign forces come to respect.  Thus, they realign themselves to suit their interests, safeguard their long visions.