THIS week, former Prime Minister and current Guyana’s Ambassador to the US, Samuel Hinds, said that the People’s National Congress (PNC) needs to make a proclamation to end the rigging of leadership contests and elections.
In his analysis, Hinds said, “A ‘Proclamation to End Rigging’ would open many wonderful doors for all our people, our country, and most of all those who, for understandably good reasons, support the PNCR/APNU. What a great relief for all of us, some relieved from having to deny and others from being angered in hearing the denials of what are well known.
He went on to say that this “…would not be an admission to something secret, not known, should not take any skin off of anyone’s nose. It would take a great burden off all of us Guyanese chests, particularly so, I say again as an Afro-Guyanese, the chests of so many of my Afro-Guyanese parents and grandparents, brothers and sisters, sons and daughters – who earnestly believed and wanted an opportunity to demonstrate that the PNCR/APNU would be good for Guyana”.
Hinds finally said “…but turning from our Christian foundations of truth and honesty to rigging has been our doom, initiating a slide to group and national disaster. It is timely to deliberately and firmly turn that page – avert the need for our younger people of great potential for our Guyana nation, like Amanza Walton-Desir and James Bond, to go down that same road of make believe on which we have been so long stuck”.
Hinds hit the nail on the head in his analysis which was both true and realistic. He offered the supporters, mostly Black Guyanese, a chance to make a timely assessment of their leaders and the methods through which they sought to aspire to get into government and stay there.
Now, here are some suggestions for the PNCR since Hinds is rallying for a proclamation to end rigging. These are things that the PNCR should rally for within the next year.
Firstly, the upcoming Congress is the place to put pressure on the party to come clean about the rigging allegation and admit its wrongs.
The PNCR could even sign an official declaration at its Sophia headquarters commencing a period of reconciliation, healing, reform, and change. Similarly, David Granger and Volda Lawrence should get pressured to depart from the party decision-making processes.
Secondly, it is only hoped that Aubrey Norton, who mainly speaks about race dominance, should be ousted. Start a sanitisation process to rid the party of all that is bad and toxic within the PNCR. Even Joseph Harmon will have his feet to the fire and should be fired as Opposition Leader. This move will cause the party to undergo reform, making it ready for the changes in the political struggle to come in the year.
If the proclamation and reforms are made, then young people would return to the party with fresh ideas and a new way of thinking. That is to say, it would not be the same type of politics that were disastrous nationally, but it would be good for Guyana.
Sadly, that would never happen anytime soon, if at all. Perhaps, it can be something to think about ahead of local government elections and the next general elections but not now.
What Hinds and his former colleague Dr. Henry Jeffery seem to have glossed over is that the PNCR is planted firmly in the school of Burnhamite politics. That is why every leader to date practised in their own way Burnham’s legacy of race dominance and party over national interests.
Also, the PNCR has developed a culture of rigging that is ingrained and part of the psyche that drives the party. This culture of rigging is likely to be on full display when the Congress is held by October or November this year.
That aside, the leaders of the PNCR know how to play an emotional game of politics with their grassroots supporters. That is where discrimination and racial politics come to the fore. By making Africans or Black Guyanese feel that they are inferior to the other races (Indians specifically), the leaders can get their supporters mobilised to exploit them. Contrary to the beliefs of Hinds, the PNCR does not desire to change its ways.
Finally, Hinds is very optimistic, while Henry is very idealistic in his approach. But most Guyanese are realistic, and they look at political trends. Many Guyanese feel the new Executive will have the same old faces with a sprinkle of the upcoming personalities. Others say it will be Burnham 2.1! That means, no proclamation will be made now or soon regardless of what are the benefits that Guyanese will procure. Every decade, the PNCR turns out different political actors who perform from the same script.