Verian Mentis-Barker
August 22nd, 2019

Office of the United Nations High Commissioner for Human Rights (OHCR)
Committee on the Elimination of Racial Discrimination (CERD)
Human Rights Treaties Division (HRTD

Dear Chairs/Heads of Groups and Committees,

I refer to United Nations Human Rights Office of High Commissioner’s Statement to the media by the United Nations’ Working Group of Experts on People of African Descent, on the conclusion of its official visit to Guyana, 2-6 October 2017 and its Paragraph 6 which states “…the Working Group found that ethnic divisions are generally reflected in political parties, as well as in the public and private sectors, and that ethnic polarization becomes particularly visible in the run up to elections.”

I respectfully submit a request for either you, or the pertinent departments to which you may refer his request, to examine, in this run up to elections, the current use of HAITIAN NATIONALS, transient through Guyana, to fan the fears of racism by the People’s Progressive Party Civic (PPP) headed by Bharrat Jagdeo former President of that country, under the guise of concern for uncontrolled immigration and trafficking in persons.

I submit that the use of Haitians, because of their African descent, is a weapon to foment racial unease and I say so because Bharrat Jagdeo has not cited other nationals like Brazilians, Venezuelans and Cubans whose numbers in Guyana are comprised mostly of their more Caucasoid and Non-African nationals

I say this, also, because the number of Trinidadians in Guyana are largely East Indian and their presence is never referred to by Bharrat Jagdeo or his Party as being potential padding for the more largely Afro Guyanese Coalition’s voter list.

I submit that PPP social and news media machines are trafficking in Bharrat Jagdeo and his PPP’s talking points of elections being rigged and are now using stock photos of random people of AFRICAN DESCENT PURPORTEDLY ARRIVING IN GUYANA,  to make the racial case of Blacks being imported to vote in Guyana’s upcoming General Elections for the Coalition Government, which is headed by an Afro Guyanese.

I have attached some of the disparaging comments to support this. I have also attached the sites from which these stock photos were taken which proves that the stock photos are not, in fact, of Haitians but are, in fact, of people of African descent, being wielded as representation of Haitians in Guyana to foment discord and distrust of the Coalition Government and the Elections Agency, Guyana Elections Commission GECOM, ahead of impending elections.

I refer to United Nations Meetings Coverage Press release General Assembly Third Committee 73rd Session 37th and 38th Meetings AM & PM GA/SHC 4245 29th October 2018 and its headline warning against Racism, Hate Speech and submit that it is applicable to Guyana’s current racial climate that continues to be stoked by the peddling of this material that can only be described as constructed for the express purpose of inciting, instigating and provoking racial animosity.

I refer to the “Emergency Assembly on the Rise of Global Racism”  held May 9th 2019 at the United Nations Office in Geneva organized jointly by the Geneva Centre for Human Rights Advancement and Global Dialogue, the World Against Racism Network and the Global Coalition for the International Decade for People of African Descent and its call to end hate speech and racism  which, amongst other things, promotes “Afrophobia”, not dissimilar to the stock photos of people of African descent being promoted by the machine of the Bharrat Jagdeo led People’s Progressive Party, Civic to incite racial animus.

The Government of Guyana, now in Caretaker Status because of a No Confidence Motion that appears to be the work of Bharrat Jagdeo and his PPP’s inveiglement, remains preoccupied with deflecting other organized efforts to further destabilize the fragile state of the Government, as it continues to address the Opposition’s use of Haitians as the racial club to attack the Coalition Government at this tenuous moment in the country’s electoral history. As a citizen, concerned about the potential insurrection these deliberately incendiary words could cause, I am exercising my civic duty by bringing the weaponizing of Afro Haitians, a form of racism, to the attention of the international community through this body.

Without citing Bharrat Jagdeo’s record of being the nation’s top executive when rights to national patrimony were given to China, India and Russia – to name a few- and the lack of significant returns on these rights in the form of improvement of national poverty level and general socio economic elevation evidenced by the country remaining third poorest in the hemisphere as borne out by pertinent metrics, I submit that Bharrat Jagdeo and his Party’s use of racism and ethnic division is with intent to adversely influence the electorate  by dividing the nation along racial lines and fits the forms of racism, racial discrimination, xenophobia condemned by E. Tendayi Achiume, Special Rapporteur appointed by the United Nations Human Rights Council on November 1s 2017.

Using stock photos of people of African descent and labelling them Haitians while asserting that they are being used by the Coalition Government to pad the voter list in the Government’s favor in an election that was called because of induced political turbulence, married to the history of Guyana’s racial division between Indo and Afro Guyanese, I am submitting that Bharrat Jagdeo and his PPP’s actions are tantamount to race baiting, are successfully laying the groundwork for the type of racial violence UN’s Rupert Colville recently condemned from the Trump Administration’s repeated iterations of what he has ascribed to racism, bigotry and white supremacy , which, in the context of Guyana is easily replaced with East Indian.

Bharaat Jagdeo, an heir to the tradition of stoking racial animus, became leader of the country for  the 11 of the 23 years that racism metastasized to ‘death squads’ conducted through his Ministry of Home Affairs headed by then Ronald Gajraj who was associated with FBI’s most wanted Roger Shaheed Khan. Appointing Ronald Gajraj as Ambassador to India and Bangladesh when the United States and other Western Nations cited his appointment as, in a word, egregious is the kind of dictatorial manoeuver that had become synonymous with his rule…disrespect of the citizens a Government is formed to represent by gifting an Ambassadorial position to Gajraj who admitted to fraternizing and issuing gun licenses to known criminals, as his involvement in a visa issuing practice to mainland Chinese families and Indians from South India became known to the public.

Given the record of the Leader of the Opposition, Bharaat Jagdeo, which attests to the racial disharmony and ethnic division that was practiced, as a matter of course- while he was being groomed for office by Cheddi Jagan who famously remarked on international soil “…blacks are on the lowest scale of the social ladder…”and wife Janet, prolific practitioner of disrespecting the Constitution – and particularly during his eleven year tenure from 1999 to 2011, I am pleading with the bodies to whom this appeal is directed, on behalf of hundreds of thousands of Guyanese , to address the use of transient Haitians by Guyana’s Political Opposition, steered by Bharrat Jagdeo, as violation of UN accord on racism, hate speech and its charter against propaganda that is being used to foment and incite civil insurrection, based on race.

The warnings issued by the Third Committee against racism and hate speech on October 29th 2018 fit the occurrences in Guyana if adjusted for geography and ethnic composition.

The issue raised in UN Article 20 Propaganda for War and its “ However, the advocacy of national, racial and religious hatred which may constitute incitement to discrimination, hostility or violence has proven to be disastrous to the nation. ” is the proximate intention of Jagdeo’s citing of Afro Haitians, albeit transients.

And though my mission here is not to expressly address the citation in Article 25 of Press Release HR/CT/557 Human Rights Committee Takes up Report of Guyana on Compliance with International Covenant on Civil and Political Rights and allegations of election rigging under the People’s National Congress, PNC, I will submit, for the record, that the only Party in Guyana’s history that has ever had allegations of elections rigging deemed credible is Bharrat Jagdeo’s PPP which was was found guilty twice by the Nation’s High Court:

-for the 1997 General Elections which were declared null and void in 2001 after a long battle, by Justice Claudette Singh because of fraud and from which, Janet Jagan was forbidden, by Court order issued by then Justice Desiree Bernard, from assuming the position of President which she boldly defied by famously throwing the Court order over her shoulder and mounting the Presidency illegitimately

-for the 2001 elections in which Jagdeo declared victory but had that rolled back because more than 30,000 votes were found to be stolen by his Party resulting in a Court reversal of his claim to Parliamentary Seats ,with one seat being taken away from his PPP and rightfully given to The United Force, TUF whose votes subverted.

These two incidents of Jagdeo’s People’s Progressive Party’s ballot pilfering are official records in Guyana’s election history and are the ONLY records of election rigging that have been adjudicated in a court of law because they were the only ones with proof past conjecture and propaganda.

Guyana is now on the brink of elections that were called before Constitutional period because of a No Confidence vote by a member of Parliament that voted with Jagdeo’s Opposition under circumstances that will not be discussed here, in deference to the purpose of this letter.

The manufacturing of claims of Haitian participation in upcoming elections is only to incite insurrection and to prevent this, I appeal to all the pertinent Committees at the United Nations to issue warnings to Guyana’s Coalition Government which includes its Opposition, a paid- by -tax -dollars arm of Government, ahead of the racial strife that is being provoked by Opposition Leader Bharrat Jagdeo and his People’s Progressive Party’s continuous racializing of the transient Afro Haitians…

… now with mangled McCarthyesque prodding…with such a large proportion of our populace under 35… will none of his supporters rid us of their renegade leader – to even save themselves??“… from a cowardly man with grandiose ambitions to lead, taking cover behind Jagdeo’s racism to anonymously stoke assassination of the President.

In Guyana, no one remains anonymous…even when they do not sign their names to their calls for murder.

I will make myself available for any questions you may have on anything I’ve mentioned in this letter of appeal for United Nations rebuke of the Opposition’s Treatment of Haitians in Guyana.

I thank you in anticipation of your urgent action on this matter.


Verian Mentis- Barker

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