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GUYANA – ALI AWARD

Irfaan Ali received the Global Leadership Award...

GUYANA – BUDGET 2024

For all of his statements that “A...

TRIBUTE – JOAN BROOMES

COGITO, ERGO SUM .........

GUYANA – GEORGETOWN DISHEVELED DEMORALIZED

PoliticsGUYANAGUYANA - GEORGETOWN DISHEVELED DEMORALIZED

The lawless sprawl of incongruence interrupting the Georgetown skyline is an appropriate metaphor for what has become the nation’s seat of government; and at every level.

If they were aiming for dishevelment, they nailed it and showed us that even that has an exceeding dimension.

Once pridefully referred to as the Garden City, we saw its devolving to the garbage city. And, we’re dismissive of the politics that would blame the Municipality because the National Government has an obligation to ensure that the face of the nation, its capital city, is pleasing to behold.

Forgive us if we have fond recollections of a Georgetown that was protected by a Historic Society /Heritage Foundation, that conformed to zoning laws and traffic patterns designed, even in its antiquity, to ease traffic and save lives.

Those were the days we rode our RSW16s and Moulton’s to school, riding through Albert Town, Queens Town and the adjacent environs, aspiring to buy homes like the quaint, well kept, cottages we saw and cars like the Ford Prefects and Holden’s we longed to drive.

In those parts of the city, paved roads and pristine parapets triggered ambitions.

The shock of what has replaced them… the gaudy, outsized towers of decadence standing next to mosques and casino’s, neighbored with thinly veiled houses of ill repute, advertised by the mangy crop of Venezuelan and Brazilian sex workers loitering as purposefully as the flies in the uncleaned gutters near them… has embedded an irretrievable trauma.

The descent of Georgetown to this comparative squalor would be a gripping plot line for a diabolical thriller.

Officially reassigning traffic order to a hodgepodge of swerves and near- misses, that gratuitously angers and unnerves, guarantees a population in perpetual combat.

Police on their 2 stroke motor cycles with looks of resignation, not even feigning effectiveness, acknowledge the mayhem with a shrug that’s a combination of powerlessness and functional impotence.

And the conveyor belt of gridlock and jerk, pedestrians and bicycles, with cars executing perilous maneuvers masked as dexterity, creates Guyana’s traffic cycle, hourly.

Some say the head folks don’t care because their blue lights make a way for them.

But, we’re thinking, this is Georgetown, the face of the nation, the seat of national Government where diplomats congregate and share their nations’ policies and plans for partnership with a Guyana that is more Djibouti than Dubai…that mismatched parallel often drawn by those whose fascination is with controlling the nation’s oil.

Manufactured comfort and looming success seem to be the default sociopolitical setting.

And that’s a result of the nation’s media ecosystem, the dominance of misinformation it festers, coming from politicians and those in the political sphere who feed the information economy…is our opinion.

That the Georgetown Chamber of commerce and its business magazine, with a tag line –the future is now, are conducting business as usual in the midst of this capital city in its regressive state, may be testament to the political leadership’s acceptance of broken and degenerative as normal.

But more concerning is Amcham Guyana, America’s protege in its worldwide federation of supplanting its businesses & business models in countries around the globe.

It was discomfiting to hear US Ambassador Sarah Ann Lynch, from a hotel that is too cost prohibitive for most Guyanese to patronize, declare “Amcham’s support in nurturing the development of U.S. business interests in Guyana ,serves as an important landing point for American firms since it is often a point of first contact with the Guyanese people”.

Which Guyanese people? The one’s who make up the bulk of the population… those of lesser means?

It’s the kind of brazen diplomatic doublespeak that contributes to the scale and complexity of Guyana’s political disinformation campaign…coming from associates of government and on its highest platforms.

The Ambassador, celebrating her 5 year launch of an American business program she deems a success, reads like the self serving mission- accomplished checklist diplomacy exported to countries, in which America has an interest.

She lives in Georgetown, plagued by its magnitude of social shortcomings and more than its fair share of constructed eyesores. Standing in that city to make that declaration is diplomatically patronizing.

And her business mentors/partners/ proteges are, by sheer number, a reflection of the ethnic composition of the ruling Party.

We’ve read that the difference between Politically Appointed and Career Diplomats is that the politically appointed are there to promote a government’s agenda.

Seems Guyana got herself a hybrid.

The smugness of her self- congratulatory announcement served mostly to pollute the media ecosystem which affirms what is said and done by the Ruling Party and its cohorts as true and beneficial, when the opposite is true…is our deduction.

It impacts the exhausted majority…people whose means exclude them from the pricey venues for socializing as it does from contributory participation in anything that directly affects their governance.

They’re demoralized, downtrodden by the squalor and the perpetual grind uphill to make sparing ends meet.

They’re somewhat aware that there’s a Constitution that guarantees their right to livelihood and happiness but will doubt that it works for them.

They are numb to politics, don’t quite understand it, don’t know what policies are but are acutely aware of a racial barrier…(meticulously exposed by the 1953 Waddington Commission’s Dr. Rita Hinden 2172-2180 as the Jagan’s strategy for political dominance).

And like an electorate in any other country, they want a government that works…especially for them.

We’ve found that they tune in to Face Book and What’s App for their politics because there is no central national media for information that is not controlled by the Ruling Party. That’s an issue we can address on another forum.

But they do agree, after the information and enlightenment they would have received from these Partisan social media outlets, there’s really no charge to do anything else, do a different thing.

So their discontent is preserved and anger prevails without knowing how to deflate either.

The country has regressed spectacularly on the fundamental infrastructure front. Roads that have degenerated from well paved to rocky, pot-holed tracks in the capital city is deliberate decline because of calculated decisions to ignore…is our opinion.

Oil is now the currency that gets the country mention on the national stage. But most of us are wary of the attention grabbing headlines and declarations of development when the social decay and infrastructural disrepair are daily encounters.

We stumbled upon an American Agency, The International Trade Administration, which is very involved in the Ministries of Public Works and Housing and Water.

Strangely, we’ve never read of any such entity in any of the usual news organs that the ordinary reader may come across. How many more of these ‘agencies’ are in service to the Guyana Government which is still comprised of an Opposition?

There are many parts to the disservice that is Guyana’s governance, not the least of which is the non-existence of a functional Opposition with a defined policy path, aided by the expertise needed to make it vibrant; viable; a veritable check and balance.

If the Opposition Leader knows of The International Trade Administration, then, he needs to inform us of its role in the Ministry of Public Works and if he has been briefed by his Shadow Minister on progress towards the stated goals.

He needs to tell us how involved he is with its operation and how the jobs this agency is creating are being apportioned across the unemployed labor force, at every skill level.

And if he doesn’t, then he needs to tell us why.

That’s the duty and obligation of the Opposition…check and balance…especially in these turbid times when foreign agencies are annexed to government ministries, seemingly, surreptitiously.

The mangling of the skyline and its matching landscape makes it impractical to think that the restoration of Georgetown, to its previous splendor, is even a thing.

The violation of zoning laws and all the statutes that were in place to merit the moniker, Garden City, were trampled upon with the unpatriotic hostility of an invading force.

There was civic identity in that fond name, Garden City, but whatever it has been reduced to, it is not the biblical Babylon in its latter days.

It is still Guyana. Public Service is still a Public Trust.

And, for those who boast the designation leader, the patriotism inherent in Political Leadership is not an acrimonious compound of racial resentment, political repression and the violation of the duty to communicate between the governing arms, when its duty is to serve the people.

It is its polar opposite.

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