THE People’s National Congress Reform-led A Partnership for National Unity (PNC/R-APNU) must hang its head in shame and disgrace because of what it made happen to some of the squatters at Mocha Arcadia, last Thursday.
The combined party instigated and encouraged the squatters to put up a resistance to the lawful wishes of the PPP Government.
Also, the opposition has stirred the pot and been carrying out a dangerous political whisper campaign through their emissaries of discord, Nima Flu-Bless, Aubrey Norton, Amanza Walton, and Roysdale Forde.
The Opposition used their untrue and false narrative about race and ethnicity, and discrimination to rally some of the Afro-Guyanese at Mocha to stand against the government.
From the outset, the PNC/R-APNU has played a defining role in frustrating the government’s efforts to relocate the squatters to safer and better communities along the East Bank corridor.
They did not represent anyone at Mocha or the Afro-Guyanese as Flu-Bess or Norton or the opposition would like Guyanese to believe, but rather they were fanning the flames of racial insecurity, political divisiveness and ethnic disharmony all along the debacle.
They are not concerned about the livelihoods of residents squatting at Mocha Arcadia, but it appears their tumultuous political careers are up in shambles as they are not doing enough to hold this government accountable for areas of public discontent wherever they may exist.
Mocha is now divided because of unnecessary political agitation and instigation by the opposition over the wrong issue.
Firstly, Norton should know that there is no justification for illegally squatting on government or State lands.
The squatters do not have paperwork for the lands they have been living on for years. If the argument is that the lands are ancestral lands of the Mocha Community, where is the proof?
Pointing the public to the gazette of 1894, as he did, is not helpful in this situation which requires urgent intervention. Norton did not command Flu-Bess, the Mocha NDC or the RDC to search for this note in the gazetteer and present it to the central government authorities.
He, maybe, knows that the land is neither ancestral lands nor belongs to Mocha.
Either way, he did not even threaten legal recourse on behalf of the Mocha Squatters in the courts.
Secondly, the squatters were not entitled to any compensation, after all, it sets a dangerous precedence in society, but this PPP Government went above and beyond the law governing land acquisition.
The government made each family a more than reasonable offer with compensation. They even put some mechanisms in place for persons to farm other lands in other locations thinking they would be seen as just and fair when they followed the rules of humanitarianism.
Also, there was consultation with the squatters as far back as 2008 and up to 2015. The party that Norton now leads had the reins of government from 2015 up until 2020 and did nothing to address the concerns of the Mocha squatters.
As a matter of fact, they did nothing substantial to address the wider housing concerns of Afro-Guyanese.
The squatters did not seek the requisite legal counsel when engaging the government on this matter. Flu-Bess was not concerned or else that would have been the first point of contact before she wickedly led the squatters astray into believing they would stand a chance if they entered into a war with the government.
So, to say that the present government is being inhumane and heartless or even to state that it is a case of ethnic discrimination or no consultation is a falsehood, and it cannot stand the test of analytical, evidential and scientific facts.
Thirdly, the truth is, Norton’s opposition saw an opportunity to score cheap political mileage by hijacking the Mocha squatters issue. It did not concern them. It did not affect the bulk of their law-abiding support base.
Maybe, the opposition is so caught up with the ethnic discrimination narrative that it is blinding them and causing them to act shamelessly.
Frankly, it is disgraceful and irresponsible to use Afro-Guyanese in this way. Questions that the opposition must answer now.
Are the squatters not human beings too?
Are they not deserving of political representation based on the truth and facts?
Why, would you toy with their emotions and tempers for political purposes?
Is this the type, quality and shape of the opposition representation to the squatters?
Norton must answer these questions and not join the bandwagon of hopeless opposition campaigns to cause divisions and rile the public up. He cannot continue to get a free pass from his supporters. This is not the type of political intellectualness or strategy the public expects from the opposition.
The shameless politicking of the Organisation for International Decade for People of African Descent of Guyana (IPADA-G) and the rest of the opposition-controlled entities who are talking now or issuing statements must raise the brows of every right-thinking Guyanese who have the facts of the issue.
The only group who feels it is the Mocha squatters.
After this ‘struggle,’ as the opposition leader calls it, it will be business as usual and he will crawl back into his hole and shell waiting to pounce again on another genuine concern of the Afro-Guyanese community.
Finally, this is a direct appeal to Afro-Guyanese to chase the opposition members, especially Norton and his band of race-baiting and divisive politicians whenever they remove their veils revealing their crassness, bitterness, pettiness, hidden innuendoes or political motives.
They have proven, the facts are there, that they are not in the politics of development and progress for all.
They are only causing trouble and making a mess then leaving it for the PPP Government to clean up after their minions have been involved in political demonstrations. The Norton-led opposition, from all the facts, is racially driven, precarious and unrighteous.
Look at the issues, ethics and reasons behind the Mocha squatting issue and do not become emotional, subjective or political. Be smart and wise up.
Do not allow yourself, your family or your community to be used to block, pause or stop development. There is a danger in believing Norton’s single story! Afro-Guyanese villages, Afro-Guyanese communities, and Afro-Guyanese are not political pawns of the opposition!