If only “that’s why we’re in government” were reassuring.
It has become the fall back rebuff to both critique and criticisms of the constitutionally elected non- leading arm of Government which has been in rebuff mode only, since it ascended to office.
No…the ‘flawed’ constitution is not the reason …nor is it anyone or anything but the Opposition itself.
Political life has been the post-colonial coexistence of a deeply entrenched, racially divided, two- Party rivalry with ongoing minor structural changes to the two Parties…in the form of either coalitions or caucus alignment, to pass certain votes. And all this has been under the same ‘flawed constitution’ which – by the way – gave the country the last Government under the other major Party.
We’ll resist the temptation to address the prefabricated responses which question our political affiliation and ethnicity, as a trigger- rejoinder to anything that fails to follow the rhetoric that bubbles in the cauldron of discontent of those who blame everybody but their leaders, for them being systemically shut out of the politicking that is owed to every citizen in a country that is not, OFFICIALLY, a dictatorship.
Following the contours of national politics may be a challenge, we’ll agree, let alone the mechanism of a constitution that is deemed ‘flawed’ when one’s party of preference is not in government. But what is neither difficult nor hard to follow is deciding whether your leader is working for you and if not, then say so either by voice or vote.
The overt racism from the leading Party is not new and is anticipated. What has been established over decades is that voter choice rests almost squarely on race. And that “breeding” policy to ensure political dominance by the PPP (2nd para below 2162) has paid off in numbers over generations; which means that every other ethnically driven Party has to reach beyond traditional lines to secure enough votes to win.
The best approach to politics at its best is prudence …adjusting orderly principles to disorderly realities. This requires making judgments that balance competing objectives…we were taught. This means that an Opposition that, by Constitution, is 50% of the governing apparatus of a ruling and opposing arm must and of necessity –recognizing that it has no singular decision-making power– work with its governing arm to fulfill its constitutional obligation to the entire nation.
It must have a political plan that would encompass that of the ruling arm since its job is to follow theirs, line by line, to hold them accountable to office and nation. That plan must at once be proactive and preemptive. In other words it must be a studied document of critical detail for every sliver of operation.
No, it’s not the single issue fights like the ‘clean voter’s list’ clamor that has now become the latest link on this string of adhoc flashpoints for mobilization.
Of course, a clean list is germane to elections but the fact that it is has become the latest lightening rod, circulating on a secondary media circuit, says that the original issue was not addressed in the right arena…and we’ll address that further in this post.
Boycotts of Parliament are, generally, strategy –driven; intended to gain some benefit through negotiations.
The suspension of the Opposition’s 8 MP’s , pursuant to conduct, should not stop the nation’s representation in Parliament by its elected Opposition.
The flippancy in its remark, as if boycotting Parliament is some sort of truancy, some sort of personal one-upping, questions whether the Opposition has embraced its role as 50% of governing; a representative not only to its constituents but to the rest of the country that expects it to check and balance the decisions of the ruling Party.
And with a court dismissing a request for relief from the suspension of the MP’s, combined with the Parliamentary Majority’s power to determine when to convene to discuss the people’s business…matters affecting revenue, healthcare, social safety, investment, production and every good and/or service that impacts national economy…the Opposition’s absence from Parliament is simply underservice…and reflects the notion that being trusted via election to represent voters gives it the unaccountable to right to make irresponsible decisions that disenfranchise the people who depend on them.
Election is not a promotion, nor is it social elevation. It’s a contract with a politician who pledged to act in voters’ interest at the governing table. Period. Opposition politicking, nonetheless, remains a species of victimhood where the persecution complex is substituted for politicians’ failure to act…is our opinion.
We’ve already been hung in literary effigy for filing this strategy of ‘Crying Victim’ under political ineptitude but we remain unfazed. When conduct can’t be defended, attacking the dissenter is the behavior of the cornered.
The continued concoctions substituting for the absence, the faltering of meaningful participation in government, are increasing in tempo as material to bond over is spun on demand. The Motley Mission is now another blow from the PPP…is the lament. People want to know why all the ‘hush- hush’, this plane that landed with a broken wheel, if it was not some plot to undo the fortunes of the PNC, say many Opposition supporters. The predicate is that a meeting at which their leader is not present cannot be on the up and up.
We’ll just say, if this meeting that has everyone so roiled up did occur then it’s definitely not the first of its kind between and amongst leaders of the region…and definitely not for Guyana.
The clandestine meetings between Burnham (4) and Bishop (3) were irritants to the watchful West which never failed to document them as rumor to salve egos when their diligence failed and they learned of the meet ups, frustratingly, only after they had occurred. There are Guyanese who were privy to them, who are still around and may be inclined to share that history.
Errol Barrow’s words of sheer pride and jubilant accomplishment during the signing of the Treaty of Chaguaramus made no secret (pg 11 Genesis of CARIFTA) of the off-the –record clandestine meetings he held with Burnham, Williams and Manley in their pursuit of regional trading autonomy which produced CARIFTA. Creating your own Psychological Warfare by trafficking in cheap conjecture only helps the enemy and is not to be misconstrued as civic diligence.
The current political conspiracy may offer temporary respite to failing politicians and frustrated members of the electorate but at some point the game gets real again.
We’ll say here that we’re shocked at the number of ‘politically seasoned’ people who have taken their eyes off Parliament to focus on this Motley Mission… a distraction that attests to a political attention deficit that makes them targets for half -stepping leaders who deflect from their underperformance with manufactured crises and, on the other side, cocky government officials who find them unguided enough to suffocate genuine outrage with bats and balls in the name of peace and development. Mis/under-information, as a tactic in political warfare, attacks the electorate from both flanks…leaving underserving politicians untouched…
And, as a teaching moment, we’ll say that Ali and his PPP need to take a page out of Mia’s book on diplomatic engagement. An impossible task, we know, given her academic pedigree and studied leadership…as opposed to their strategy of deception and unscrupulous cunning with copious western support from the Plenipotentiary Madam.
Explicitly not referencing any meeting, Mia was not involved in any accident …even if Guyana Aviation ‘find the plane wheel’.
While we’re here let’s look at where the Opposition is…shopping its clean voters’ list demand to a foreign community which supports the International Republican Institute’s electoral reform project in Guyana…
Negotiating with the leading Party in Parliament, with this comparative civility, may yield a greater national outcome than sitting with foreigners to complain about what you should be working with the leading Party on, to fulfill your side of governing. Seeking assistance from Sarah Ann Lynch and her cohorts is like going to the devil for confession…
And the Pity Fallacy of ‘Criticism of Everyone’ from Hoyte thru him, proffered by the Leader, is just another deflection of well placed sentiment. When you accept public office your failed pledge is palpable. Not working as part of government for the people is evident every time they announce some sort of progress and you’re not doing so in tandem with them…even if on a different stage and with the Opposition’s caveat. That’s what being 50% of government dictates…especially making the Opposition more of a national entity… which the Opposition is yet to embrace.
That the Larger Opposition, in rare unity, took to social media to claim some sort of victory after meeting with the foreign community which it, with curious effervescence, said it held to its past support of a clean voters list looked like a futile mission to assert its existence. Then they took a great Public Relations photo, not for them but for the foreigners who tout democracy and then refuse to apply its principles to the glaringly anti-democratic PPP because that’s their government of preference.
If Wikileaks is any guide, we’re willing to wager their notes read : “Met with the Opposition at their insistence…not because we found it necessary…”
The plenipotentiary British Madam is as democratic as America’s plenipotentiary Madam, as are the other two Madams who assisted in holding court. If it were different then the trek by the ABC diplomats would have been unnecessary.
We’re only saying this because the ABC countries, with all of their mediating magic, still have not told the Coalition that the resolution for a functional Opposition is to stay in Parliament and negotiate like it is supposed to, with the ruling arm of Government.
We’re submitting that doing so would not be in the Foreign Diplomats’ interest.
They are in Guyana to do “political work”, per Madam Miller’s site which unquestionably involves reshaping the government to serve foreign interests, to the peril of our Independence and the demise of our Republic.
If only “that’s why we’re in government” were reassuring.