Mr. Anil Nandlall has taken issue with my observation that he has said that the representatives of the ABCE countries are on the side of the PPP in its battle with the APNU+AFC Coalition over the March 2 election. (Stabroek News May 21, 2020). The former Attorney General was at the time speaking on an online TV programme hosted by Globespan 24/7 on May 18, 2020. He has accused me of taking his words out of context and misquoting him.
He quotes himself as saying this: “this is not a fight of the PPP or a fight for the PPP. This is a fight for democracy, a fight for righteousness, a fight for the rule of law, a fight for the future of Guyana. In this fight, all of the opposition parties, every major local organisation, including, the private sector, the religious organisations, the labour movement, the diplomatic community and the governments that they represent, CARICOM, the Commonwealth and the OAS, are all on the same side.”
I think I know something about context and so I was very sure that I had not committed that error. I also was almost sure that Mr. Nandlall quotation of what he said was inaccurate. However, I went back to the program to see if Mr. Nandlall was correct. And to my surprise, I was spot on. Mr. Nandlall was waxing lyric about all the forces that were supporting the PPP or as he put it is “on their side.” And worse I found that he had misquoted himself. Having been caught, he sought to rearrange his words to give another impression.
I therefore reproduce here verbatim his remarks in response to a statement that the PPP must not share the corn when they are declared the winner. Here is Mr. Anil Nandlall, in his own words,-judge for yourselves and readers can go to the program and listen for themselves to determine whose version of Nandlall’s comments is accurate. Here goes.
“Let me assure you that this fight is not only a PPP fight. And it is not a fight for the PPP either. I want to make that clear. This is a fight for democracy. This is a fight for righteousness. This is a fight for human rights. This is a fight for the future of Guyana. The PPP is simply a fighter in the fight.
And we are pleased, pleased is putting it mildly. We are elated by the support we have gotten the smaller political parties representing every class and ethnic grouping across the divide.
We are very motivated by the organisations that have lent us their support and that have lent their support to the struggle. We have on our side all the major religious organizations, we have the Private Sector . We have largest united labour movement on our side, we have the farmers. We have Guyana on our side. And then if you look at the international community. We have All the major ambassadors representing the powerful countries in the world., we have them on our side.
We have CARICOM on our side. We have the Commonwealth on our side. We have the OAS on our side. We have all the stakeholder group that have an interest in Guyana. Not one of them has stood on the side of the APNU+ AFC. Not one.” (End of quote)
Mr. Nandlall ended his letter by advising me to use my academic energies to explore why none of the forces he listed is not on the coalition’s side, all of the local and international forces engaged, including, the political parties, are currently aligned on one side and only the APNU+AFC, in solitude, is on the other side.” Even this statement gives away Mr. Nandlall’s real message. But let me assure him that I have already taken up his advice and would over time undertake that analysis. All of us who care about fairness owe Guyana that debt.