Maybe your Eyewitness doesn’t get around as much as he ought to. In this season of discontent – not to mention gnashing of teeth! – with the now everyday blackouts, one citizen referred to the power company as “GPHell”!! The wit and wisdom of the man in the minibus! In that neologism (literally “new word”!!) is captured the reality of the ordinary citizen, forced to live in the degradation of being catapulted into stygian darkness at any moment – without notice! Life on the edge of the abyss is hell indeed!
“Blackout” isn’t just about the lights. It’s also about highlighting the class differences in Guyana. The real rich ones who can afford it — and ministers! — already have their generators with automatic switches that “sense” when GPHell’s gone off, and without pause, turns over to generator power. Literally for them, blackouts are just a blip! Even their AC’s can be powered by their high-output generators. Hearing about blackout complaints, they wonder, “What’s all this fuss??”
Right down the line are those owning generators with “key start”. They just have to pull a couple of switches in their electrical panel, turn on their generators with their key, and fume because they have to walk outdoors to where they placed their generator. Further down are the ones who don’t have the key switch, so have to put their shoulder into it by pulling the start-cord a number of times. Really gives their arms a good workout if the generator hasn’t been serviced!! At the bottom of the totem pole, of course, are the ordinary folks, who can afford neither the generator nor the gas to fuel it. For them, the reality is GPHell!!
Their chicken in the fridge will ‘spoil”. Their kids won’t be able to complete their homework – especially since so much of the latter now depends on getting onto the Web. But, worst of all, they’re reminded of how much their lives of quiet desperation are made bearable by the TV fantast fare. When this goes off in the GPHell, they have no alternative but to face their frustrations of living in a backward Third World country – which is just above Haiti on the human “livability” scale.
What makes the situation worse is that subject Minister Patterson — who seems to be Pressie’s blue-eyed boy — had the gall to announce how GPHell is awash in cash — because of cheap oil, not better collections! — yet can’t deliver a basic service that has been produced and transmitted over a hundred years.
Maybe we should bring back Wartsilla? Hell…maybe we should bring back the British!!
Well, well, well. Just when your Eyewitness thought he’d heard it all, up comes Town Clerk Royston King to “explain” that there might be some method to his madness in his garbage plan. The last we’d heard from him was he’d found the two established garbage collectors — Puran and Cevons (P&C), whom the City owes $300M — to’ve breached their contract for not allowing that $300M to swell further by picking up more garbage!!
King had also announced that, to handle the vacuum left by P&C, he’d gotten three small companies to pick up garbage along with the City Garbage Dept, and he’ll pay off P&C. Now, if this was an option, why hadn’t King exercised it before? And if he can pay these new-garbage-kids-on-the-block and his men, where will he get the money to pay off P&C?
Your Eyewitness must give a hat tip to King, though. If he can sell this bit of snake oil, then he ought to apply to solve our Venezuelan Border controversy!
Seriously now: has Basil Williams EVER won a case? His latest argument was the PPP were squatting so egregiously in Red House their claim didn’t even have to be heard by the courts.
It was just summarily thrown out!!