EYEWITNESS: Defending…


…the indefensible Govt record

With the spectre of the PPP’s no-confidence motion looming in front of the PNC-led Government, their desperation is ballooning into gargantuan proportions. One can just listen to the tone of the defences they’ve thrown up to the PPP’s charge that they’ve lost the confidence of the Guyanese people: they’re downright panic-stricken!! The first damp squib was tossed out by PM Nagamootoo, as described by your Eyewitness, when he exploited President Granger’s lymphoma in his Chronic Column as a sob story to deflect from the Government’s failures.

He claims the PPP’s motion is heartless since their motion would “negatively affect” the President’s health!! Nagamootoo might just win the Nobel Prize for medicine since no one else has shown a connect between lymphoma and disappointment!!

The PNC – of which Nagamootoo has to be now a card-carrying member since he still has his Chronic Govt job! – has to be scraping the barrel. They pulled out ERC Councillor and ACDA Executive, Barrington Braithwaite, to repeat the logical fallacy in yesterday’s Chronic!!

But let’s look a gander at the “accomplishments” the PNC trotted out in full page advertisements, to get a measure of their desperation. Right off the bat they boasted about CLOSING FOUR SUGAR ESTATES and firing 7000 workers – without providing any alternate means of earning a livelihood!! Note that they did this AGAINST the recommendations of their own CoI. But conceding that they felt the closure made “economic sense” – even though it’s a social disaster – why didn’t they do what the PPP did when the bauxite industry was downsized?

The PPP initiated talks with the EU and negotiated a 12 million Euro grant – equivalent to $2 billion – in 2002, which was plunked into a Linden Economic Advancement Programme (LEAP) to spur entrepreneurship in the bauxite town.

LEAP was augmented by LEAF which was continued by the PNC as LEN with $155 million.

This year, another $160 million was plunked in! Now, nobody begrudges Linden from getting all these funds to stimulate business creation – on top of $3 billion annual subsidies for electricity. But for the PNC to list the closure of sugar estates as an “accomplishment”, shouldn’t they at least show some compassion like the PPP did?

The PNC also asserted that they’ve restored Georgetown to being the “Garden City” – “cleaner, more beautiful and not cluttered with garbage”!!! It’s obvious when the PM and the other PNC Ministers tool around the city in their heavily tinted black SUVs with flashing lights, outriders and sirens, they can’t actually see the growing mountains of garbage at strategic locales!!

The PNC shot themselves so many times in the foot, we might as well stop here.

Christmas goodwill and all that!!

…more Venezuelans into Guyana

A week ago, when the Russians flew four long-range bombers into Venezuela, there was panic in some camps, who ran out of their homes crying, “The Venezuelans are coming!! The Venezuelans are coming!!”. That was a false alarm…but not necessarily a false statement!

The Venezuelans are in fact coming – but at this time as refugees and not soldiers.
As of a month ago, there were some 2800+ OFFICIALLY acknowledged Venezuelans in Region One. But conservatively speaking, for every one of those you can bet there’s a corresponding Venezuelan not counted, but here. Have you sauntered around Georgetown lately?? The UN just informed us that we can expect the influx to continue – and who knows, even intensify. They’re talking about some funding to assist in the expenses to house and feed these hapless souls.

But we have to look ahead to the future. If the demographic becomes significant – say, 10,000 which at least two seats worth – then we may have another set of swing votes!!
See? The political logjam is solved!!

…professional T20

Hats off to young Hetmeyer, Rutherford and Paul for signing with IPL teams. No matter how much hand wringing the WICB engages in, professional T20 is here to stay and they’d better embrace it.

Can they match those figures to keep the youngsters home?



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