Donald Ramotar and the PPP have made several missteps, already. The accepted returns of the electorate following the recent national election held on November 28, 2011 resulted in PPP possessing thirty-two seats, APNU twenty six seats and AFC seven seats. This loss of parliamentary majority should have impressed upon the PPP the need for an administration most reflective and/or inclusive the voice of the Guyanese voters.
However, Donald Ramotar’s cabinet left much to be desired. Donald Ramotar, not surprising, and/or reflective of the tally PPP received and/or gave themselves failed miserably to seize the day and aspire to change the pattern of behavior. The result of the process of selection employed by the PPP can certainly be described as continuance of failed and failing personnel in the highest offices in the land. Clearly, the PPP have acted in violation and disregard of the consensus of 174,000 of the Guyanese voters.
I shall ever argue that Ramotar, his advisers, and the PPP already committed their first major error of this current administration. They should have seized day. The PPP should have named between five and seven members of the opposition as members of the cabinet. Thereby attempt to offset the gains made by the opposition. Such a move would have been sound political strategy. It would have indicated to the voters that the PPP is serious about change. The PPP is committed to ending the climate of ethnic fears and insecurity, which have bedeviled the Guyanese people most noticeably since perhaps October 1953. Again the PPP has deliberately missed the boat.
PPP - A HISTORY OF RECURRING BLUNDERS AND MISSTEPS, MISS OPPORTUNITIES
The PPP has a long history of missteps and missed opportunities. Therefore the PPP made major contributions to the extended period of misery experienced by the Guyanese people since the British Government removed the representation of the Guyanese people in October 1953. The unnecessary controversies which resulted in the departures of Eusi Kwayana and Balram Singh Rai from the PPP were most regrettable, unnecessary and unforgiving. The PPP had already suffered a major and not surprising split in February 1955. In the 1970s, the PPP committed its most glaring errors. First, in 1973, the nonsense labeled critical support. Then, perhaps, their greatest travesty, their failure to work with the WPA to remove the Forbes Burnham regime from office in 1979. I stand on the firm belief; the majority of the Guyanese people were prepared and expected change – the removal of the PNC regime in 1979. Thus, it’s my view the PPP did not seize and/or join the movement to terminate the Burnham dictatorship but instead opted for survival.
I had concluded that Dr. Jagan was afraid any effort to remove the PNC would degenerate into ethnic hostilities, as occurred in 1962 – 1964. Jagan did not want Guyanese to bleed for their freedom and liberty. He was trying to echo Mahatma Gandhi. I was most pleasantly surprised to read an article by Dr. Rupert Roopnarine stating Dr. Jagan was an admirer of bloody revolutions. I still do not know what to make of that statement. Perhaps, I would still doubt that very much even if I heard it uttered by Dr. Jagan, himself.
Clearly, Donald Ramotar should have reached out to a number of highly respected Guyanese to advise and/or join his cabinet. Amongst these should be Eusi Kwayana, Balram Singh Rai, Moses Bhagwan Rampersaud Tiwari, Rashleigh Jackson, Barton Scotland, Harold Lutchman, Joycelyne Loncke, Sonny Ramphal, and Ronald Austin and a number of others should have been approached.
Persons such as Faith Harding, Deborah Backer, Moses Nagamootoo, Ramjattan, Trotman, Roopnarine, David Hinds and a number of others should have been considered and approached for ministerial positions. Such moves and approaches would have been unprecedented in the annals of Guyanese political history, dating back to the Europeans seizure and colonization of the homelands of the aboriginal peoples of Guyana during the opening decades of the seventeenth century.
The three days’ delay in the announcement of the result of the November 28, 2011 election has certainly raised eye brows. They presented reasons for concern and perhaps, grievances.
Certainly, reform is an absolute necessity. The need is to totally address the concerns and/or questions raised. If the PPP were returned with a majority cries of election engineering would have appeared on the surface totally valid.
The unanswered question remains did the APNU actually obtained the most votes? The answer to that question remains unknown. The three days’ delay before the announcement has given rise to legitimate questions concerning the accuracy of the announced and accepted returns of the November 28, 2011 election.
I believe if the Guyanese people employed at GECOM are proved to be not above board, are in doubt and cooperated with the PPP – then, they are enemies of the Guyanese people. In fact the entire lot must face the full weight of the laws of the people and state of Guyana, and the full force of the wrath of the Guyanese people.
In a multiethnic society such as Guyana with such an explosive climate of ethnic insecurity and fears it is perhaps best practice for the United Nations to handle all aspects and phases of the national electoral process.
I am unconvinced that ballot boxes must be secured by the political party in office, and Guyanese would accept the results as gospel –and/ or as an accurate assessment of the voice of the Guyanese People. I believe no investment must be spared in the effort to arrive at a most accurate result, at all times…
At first glance, I gleamed the Guyanese voters announced they were sick, and tired of Jagdeo, and his elected dictatorship which resulted in too many homicides, corruption, nepotism, marginalization, disenfranchisement of people and their communities. I would be surprised if history does not declare more
Guyanese were killed during Jagdeo’s eleven years of dictatorship, than the combined total of the PNC years, 1964-1992 and the periods of Cheddi Jagan, April – October 1953, 1957 – 1964, and 1992-1997. Would you believe that the Daily Chronicle reported that there were twenty-three (23) reported homicides for the year ending 1957? The Commissioner of the British Guiana Police Force groaned that that figure was extra-ordinarily high and therefore unacceptable. That was then – wonder what he would have stated respecting the numbers of homicides during the Jagdeo years at the helm?
Thus, at first glance the figures although disappointed that the AFC did not receive the most votes and thus would not be allowed to lead the nation for the next five years, I was initially satisfied. However, I could not shake the nagging feeling of something fishy transpired during the three days’ delay. Could it have been foul play? Were the numbers doctored? Did the PPP receive even less votes than the announced figures? If so, why didn’t the PPP give themselves a
clear-cut majority? Are the PPP and Gocool and Surubally and GECOM playing the Guyanese people for total idiots? Are the PPP and their agents at GECOM hell-bent on rejecting change from the missteps of the generations of the past and disregarding the wishes, the voices of the current generations? I am positive, these and other questions raised by others deserve to be addressed totally. But, will they?
I believe Donald Ramotar, the PPP and their advisers, should have looked at the numbers, 166,000 votes and interpret such as a clear-cut consensus that the Guyanese voters have spoken, saying they have rejected past behaviors. Once the PPP executive had done so; they would have realized they simply could not select a cabinet which shows continuity on the surface. A sly political statement would have been to approach persons connected with the WPA, and the AFC, if they were uncertain what to make of trying PNC personnel. At least, Donald Ramotar would have best advised to make overtures to include persons from all political groups in his cabinet.
I must say I am utterly disappointed. But not surprised – although I was hoping Donald Ramotar would have the mental fortitude to copy one of the best strategies Forbes Burnham ever employed – grabbing and enticing opponents to join the PNC regime.
Another failing grade for the PPP. Another loss for the people and state of Guyana. Yet, all’s not lost – the opposition has the majority – that ensures the PPP must respect the wishes of the Guyanese people, or at least Guyana’s parliament, and/or face an even more worst result in the next national and local government elections.