For those of us who were wondering if this was one of the floats, point of clarification here.
The Lord Mayor, Honorable Hamilton Green, was allowed to appear, in his mayoral regalia, bedecked and bejeweled, in the capacity of Mayor of Georgetown.
And, no. It’s not a costume. He’s not trying to be Mr. T or anything.
He’s just trying to be Mayor because he heard that the government had changed and that Carol Sooba, his warden, was no longer around to keep him penned under his desk.
Indeed, change can be an emboldening thing but even disguised in the real outfit of the office, let’s not forget how neutered and non functional this Mayor was.
Let’s remember how he got the chain and the locket in the first place.
For a quick recap, he ran afoul of the PNC because he was undermining President Hoyte. Why you ask? Because he was of the opinion that Hoyte’s principles and morality had no place in the politics that he knew.
And, maybe he had a point but this is not about Hammy’s irreverent orientation. This is about how he became The Lord Mayor. So, after several cycles of warnings and infractions, Hammy was booted out of the PNC political party and he formed his own, Good and Green for Guyana.
Now Good and Green was never good for Guyana; just for Green. The vulturine PPP, seeing an opportunity to run both general and local governments, wooed Hammy with all sorts of sweet meats. Your imagination is given free rein here because we know that there is only one kind of meat that is sweet to Hammy; especially when it involves politics and tax payers dollars. And he was coming with a premium because he was already the head of that ‘office’ which held heavy hitters – no pun intended – like Flat Top and Bruk Up, some of the feared Mafioso types in Guyana, at the time. Yes, he did recruit Kwame McCoy to ‘soften’ things up a little but that falls under the category of Equal Employment Opportunity; so, for this discussion, that will be moot.
So, Hammy cut a deal with Dr. Cheddi to have Mayoral rotation after he won the elections, which the PPP guaranteed. Hammy won, reneged on the rotation and became the most neutered, nullified and non consequential Mayor in our country’s history and,consequently, lost political face.
Apparently, he forgot that local government has to depend on national government for funding and legislative support but my theory is that he gambled on the PPP as being a body with a patriotic conscience that would have forced their hands to not play politics to the peril of the Garden City.
Gamble aside, the moral of the story is if you sell your people to the PPP for thirty dirty pieces of silver in the form of political office, then you’ll end up like Hammy – declawed, de-balled, de-railed.
But we’ve already established that Hammy has no morals, so ,let’s not dwell on that. Let’s fast forward to Independence Day and the Ushering in of change.
Like every patriotic Guyanese, Hammy welcomed change. This meant that he may still have a chance to ‘Mayor ‘. After all, he had been selling his story as one of political crucifixion. His key note speeches to expatriate Guyanese never failed to explain that he stayed in office to “protect” the small businesses that were sure to lose operating licenses if he were not there to fight for their existence. These small businesses were, of course, Afro owned and the target of the PPP.
A noble cause but a negligible one, when we think of how Georgetown decayed under Hammy’s mayoral mantle. So I chalk that up to fabrication to excuse his mayoral impotence and a lame attempt to stay pertinent and justified.
That being said, Hammy donned his chain and locket to remind us that he is still the Mayor. He wants us to remember that Local Government Elections will be held in a few months and he still has his outfit to wear to the ball. He still has his swagger and is still willing to make public appearances in the capacity of Mayor.
What Hammy hasn’t realized is that this change is all encompassing. His service, whatever it was, has been duly noted along with the part that he played in making what it was. We know that we have to change our politicians if we want to change our politics and Hammy’s politics comes from an era that is both passé and obsolete, so it is prime candidate for today’s change.
This new government has given us new hope for the future of our politics and our country.
The Lord Mayor,making a bold public appearance after decades of humiliation and hiding from the captors with whom he had made that selfishly expedient but unholy alliance, simply reminds us why Hammy’s exit by election is part of this necessary change.