Wednesday, September 30, 2015

Cheddi Jagan

Ever since Dr. Cheddi Bharrat Jagan (1918-1997) joined the ancestors on March 6, 1997, the Peoples’ Progressive Party and their supporters have gone out of their way to deify Dr. Jagan. Ever so often, articles are published telling you and I, Dr. Jagan was;
Beyond reproof
The father of the nation
The architect of Guyana ’s independence.
Political scientists such as Dr. Prem Misir and Dr. Festus Brotherson have all but convinced many Dr. Jagan was god in human form upon earth.  Indeed Guyana , and Guyanese were truly was blessed by his presence. Those who questioned were berated as possessing hair-brained thoughts which reproduced only hog wash at best – and could only originate from racism. The members of underprivileged working class are, in the words of many professors, who for the most part, are suppressors of information; do not possess any rationale whatsoever. Questioning rhetoric and policies which have resulted in misery and underdevelopment of the people of Guyana is often up against ethnic and religious loyalties. As a result desperate people continue to romanticize Dr. Jagan. Thus, the PPP has lifted Cheddi Jagan and his legacy to heights bordering on creating a new religion, with Dr. Jagan is its messiah. Claiming it is wrong for those of us who has suffered the consequences of the actions, reactions of selfish political aspirants of the highest offices of the land to criticize those so-called men of national, regional and international stature.
It is incomprehensively that only the privileged few are to be immortalized and iconize. In my simple, humble mind, man was birthed to die, physically. I term it the great equalizer. Dr. Jagan lived as a man. Dr. Jagan died as a man – end of story – but no; his supporters continued to perpetuate a myth, upon the unsuspecting Guyanese nationals. Today, I have great difficulties understanding whether they are communicating about a man or a God. Their thought process. It is my understanding of the articles – no other leader mattered in the history of the human experience in Guyana . While the Jaganites are lifting Cheddi to a god-like stature – they have abandoned his seed. They have turned their collective backs upon Cheddi Jagan Jr. and Joey Jagan. The platform their father built into a mass movement – has a closed door – policy to Dr. Jagan’s sons. I am absolutely perturbed by such a development. I am positive something is amiss with such behaviour. I can assure you – in the English Speaking Caribbean – it is a very strange phenomenon for sons have followed their fathers in the political party which promoted the prior generation of the member of the family. Manley in Jamaica , Bird in Antigua and Adams in Barbados spring quickly to my mind. That is certainly a striking feature in the policy of the PPP.
It is commonly accepted the East Indians arrived in British Guiana on May 3rd, 1838 when they disembarked at Vreed-en-Hoop on the West Bank of the Demerara River . It seems to me, that it is logical to conclude East Indians were up against it even before they arrived in British Guiana .
Thus, it is likely, radicals advocating, self-emancipation – and improved conditions across the board were numbered among the indentured labourers from the Indian sub-continent. It is simply too ridiculous a notion for  intelligent beings to accept East Indians had no voice in British Guiana , until Dr. Jagan returned from the USA, in the era of the closing years of the second White War of the twentieth Century. Off Course, that is simply not accurate – not by a long shot. In a period of more than eighty years between the murder of labourers at Leonora on the West Coast of Demerara and that of the massacre of the sugar employees at Plantation Enmore in 1948 – there were numerous upheavals all over the sugar belt, which accounted for numerous deaths, and mayhem upon the east Indians in British Guiana .
The first notable voice in support of the East Indian workers, by an East Indian was that of Bechu who was indentured at Plantations Enmore and Cove and John on the East Coast of Demerara.
Joseph Ruhomon and his cousins, members of the Luckhoo kinship were among the leading lights. They established the British Guiana East Indian Association as a vehicle to promote the Indian Opinion. BGEA articulated on the behalf of the East Indian workers.
The BGEA advocated improved conditions in all phases of life for East Indians in the Colony of British Guiana.
Clearly, their were numerous, unsung heroes, who advocated on the behalf of the East Indians at various sugar estates, throughout the East Indian experience in the sugar industry in British Guiana.
It is an absolute necessity for historians to document the struggles waged by the people – as represented by their leaders on the various estates.  It is high time