EYEWITNESS: Holding fast…


…on GECOM Chair

Your humble Eyewitness isn’t one who likes to crow, “I TOLD YOU SO!” But he has to mention that the outcome of the widely heralded second meeting of Prezzie and Opposition Leader Jagdeo was predicted by him.

Not that he’s any analytical whiz or anything – it was clear that we’re looking at a game of “chicken” played out in bright daylight. And neither party (singly and collectively) is willing to jump off the rails as the speeding train of the integrity of our electoral machinery careens out of control.

Now some might say the whole issue of the criteria for selecting the GECOM Chair is moot – seeing as how the Chancellor’s promised to pronounce this Thursday on the petition of businessman Gaskin on the matter. But your Eyewitness is of those jaded types who just doesn’t believe in stories with all loose ends tied up and folks living happily ever after. Even those Brothers Grimm stories, after all, were REALLY grim, when you think about them! Like with wolves devouring children, old ladies boiling and eating same and all that!

From the very beginning, Prezzie had to’ve known it’ll come down to the Judiciary making the call. After all, it’s a matter of interpreting the Constitution. Even a lost-in-the-woods fella like Basil Williams couldn’t have told him otherwise – contrary to the florid asservations of the latter’s Court Jester, Maxwell E Edwards. Prezzie was just working the plan when he rejected Jagdeo’s first list at the beginning of the year.

The Chancellor then was still Justice Singh, who’s stubbornly stuck to the letter of the law – and his post! – even in the face of naked provocation and insults by Basil Williams. But Singh would be gone by Republic Day when he delivered the judgement on what folks call ‘the third term case”. But that was just a feint – the main play was the chairmanship of GECOM, which after all, would deliver the kingdom for at least another five years! Then oil would be flowing and many sins would be covered (with money)!

And so a new Chief Justice and Chancellor were appointed – both “acting”. In Guyana, of course, “acting” is the name of our local “Sword of Damocles” – which the Government hangs over the heads of officials to keep them in line. Do it or its “off with their heads”!! The acting appointee doesn’t even have to be told what to do in this case. With the selection of the GECOM chair playing out for six months in the public domain – the Chancellor knows from whence the wind is blowing!

From Vlissengen Road way!!

Will the centre hold?

… on Praetorians

Guyana Times ran an interesting editorial on the PNC-led APNU/AFC Government talking on a “praetorian form”. “What the heck was that?” thought your usually well-informed Eyewitness. So as his (paid) duty – he duly looked into it. And lo and behold – as some of the more Biblically-minded among us may say – a lot of things made sense.

A Praetorian government is basically one that’s dominated by the military – because the originally civilian government considers it a “force for modernisation”. After WWII, Third World countries emerging from colonialism were seen as “backward” because they didn’t have the institutions to organise them for development. Armies were seen as possessing the requisite discipline from their training by the departing colonists.

Why not use them? Burnham – for several reasons – bought the line and expanded his militarised forces exponentially. But inevitably, the mean-ends dilemma pops up. Can you use fellas steeped in anti-democratic tradition to create democracy?
Very simply – history says the answer is “NO!!”

…on welshing

To ‘welch” on someone is not to keep your promise or word to them. Some think it’s a slur on the Welsh” who the English thought weren’t quite trustworthy.

The Education PS Welsh’s answers to the PAC’s questions hint at his antecedents?


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