Eyewitness: Defending…


…Guyana at UN
President Irfaan Ali has launched an international offensive to counter the bellicosity of Venezuelans again directed against us with their risible claim to our Essequibo. We’ve been blindsided by Norway, which is trying to broker a peace deal between Maduro’s regime and the Venezuelan Opposition forces by offering Essequibo as a “low hanging fruit” – as one analyst put it – to get them to agree on something. Imagine the chutzpah!! The Norwegians must cynically believe that such a transactional quid pro quo approach is justified to break a logjam that’s seen 5 million Venezuelans flee their country and the economy imploding like a dying Death Star.
Tomorrow, Norway resumes the meeting between the Venezuelans, and God knows what they’ll offer this time to “sweeten the deal”. The Exxon oil rigs and FPSO? Because that’s what it’s all about, isn’t it? The Venezuelans kicked out Exxon when they were one of the largest oil producers in OPEC and the world. Like Burnham, they thought they could nationalise their resource extraction and make a killing. They forgot that their people didn’t have the experience to run squat. So everything crashed like Humpty Dumpty, and they just can’t put it together again. Imagine, having the largest oil reserves in the world and citizens can’t get bread in the stores!!
But Pres Ali bearded the leftist “pink” allies of Venezuela at the CELAC meeting on his way to the UN. While we didn’t see anything in the press, we should know these matters are best broached off-stage. Let’s see what happens tomorrow. Pres. Ali continued his offensive at the UN General Assembly meet, where – even with the COVID pandemic – more than half of the 193 world leaders showed up. The most important meeting by Pres Ali was with the OAS leadership – which CELAC is trying to oust as the authoritative voice for the hemisphere. That’ll take some doing, since the OAS has the three most powerful hemispheric countries – the US and Canada plus BRAZIL – as members, and CELAC doesn’t!
Pres Ali made the most powerful argument possible in the UN Forum. To wit, that Venezuela refuses to accept a process proposed by the UN SECRETARY GENERAL to resolve the controversy Venezuela raised since 1962 – to stymie our drive to rise out of poverty. How dare Venezuela impugn the integrity of the ICJ/World Court to impartially rule on the matter?? The President was joined by our most experienced VP in this full-court-press of world leaders and institutions like the IDB.
Fact of the matter, Guyana isn’t the HIPC that the PNC left in 1992.
It’s the hemisphere’s highest-growth economy, and might just pull the region out of its slump. People now listen!!

…civil public discourse
One of the prerequisites of maintaining a democratic order is that the necessary public discourse on contentious maters must be conducted in a civil manner. A civil discourse has been defined as a “robust, honest, frank and constructive dialogue and deliberation that seeks to advance the public interest.” Sadly, this notion has clearly “gone for channa” in Guyana, and this doesn’t bode well for “we, the people”.
Your Eyewitness doesn’t have to illustrate his claim, does he? Never in his wildest dream would he’ve believed that an “Honourable” Member of Parliament would have publicly called a colleague member of Parliament, who happens to be a Minister, a “wild boar”. Of course, political opponents will needle each other…but where’s the wit that used to characterise our political “picong”?
The golden rule is to show respect: “Respect is like air, if you take it away, it’s all people can think about. Others will not engage with you if they don’t feel you respect them.”
Hear that, PNCites?

There used to be talk about renaming the “Guyana Police Force” as the “Guyana Police Service”, to remind our cops that they’re here to “Protect and Serve” the PEOPLE!
What happened?