EYEWITNESS: New developments…

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…in investment

The AFC, via its then Chairman (and now leader) Raphael Trotman, introduced the term of art, “political investment’ into the Guyanese lexicon. ‘Twas at the opening of their spanking new headquarters in Kitty when one big businessman was acknowledged as the fella who’d funded the entire shebang! It wasn’t too long after, the “political investment” produced a big dividend for the investor when his moribund Wind Farm was touted as the epitome of “going green” on electricity, rather than hydro in general and AFHEP in particular!!

Anyhow, the AFC did take some licks for their frank avowal for what’s clearly the norm in their coalition – with PNC’s payoffs like the “bottom house warehouse” and ANSA’s big pharma contract. (ANSA isn’t “big pharma”, just their contract is!!). So how do we deal with the latest twist in “political investments” that just cropped up?? Your humble Eyewitness is referring to the accusation by Ramjattan’s cousin who claimed the big and bad PPP deep-sixed his US$5 million proposed investment in a factory to produce condiments. This was evidently an AFC “family investment” that was nastily nixed!

The Muckraker immediately jumped all over that accusation as proof positive of the “vindictiveness” of the PPP towards those who may even have the most tenuous of connections to the “other side”. But lo and behold, an exculpation of the PPP just came from the most unlikely of sources – the head of Go-Invest! Not the PPP appointee who was axed early in the new dispensation – but the newly appointed one, who probably hasn’t been around long enough to’ve absorbed enough of the local political bile.

The fella allowed he couldn’t very well pronounce on what transpired under the PPP. But what he could say was as soon as the new Government was installed and the (political) Ramjattan was made VP and Public Security Minister, the (business) Ramjattan showed up at Go-Invest’s door! Armed with recommendations “from the top down”, the (business) Ramjattan asked for five acres of prime land near Georgetown, and “demands that can’t be met from the legal framework in place”!!

Not getting the answer he expected – giving in to all he’d asked for and damn the legal formalities, like occurred on the warehouse etc – the (business) Ramjattan plunked his investment down in T&T. The Go-Invest honcho figured that in addition to the concessions, T&T’s energy costs – five times less than ours – might’ve had something to do with his decision. Most likely, this was probably the PPP’s rationale also!

The (political) Ramjattan just doesn’t have any say in the Police Force, but also absolutely no clout in doling out favours.
Even on a “family investment”!!

…in the colour scheme

Ralph Ramkarran, the former Speaker, gave the leader of the PNC – and President of our fair land, David Granger – the benefit of the doubt after observing him painting State House (breaking the law of the said fair country in the process!) and the Ministry of the Presidency’s buildings, GREEN. Ramkarran suggested the colour may just be Granger signalling the world he’s serious about his “green agenda”. The details of the said agenda remain shrouded in mystery so maybe the world does need a signal?!

Your Eyewitness will not break a lance with Ramkarran, save to say he’s not convinced on account of President Granger’s single-minded drive to re-institute PNC’s paramountcy over the State – and green just happens to be the PNC’s colour!! Another arrow in that (subversive) quiver is the AFC’s yellow was quietly dumped from the green-and-yellow colour scheme launched on Independence Day 2015.

Well, Granger’s being challenged on the “paramountcy of colours” by no other than Burnham’s son-in-law!

He just painted GWI’s vehicles “green and yellow”!!

…in economic development?

So the opening of a Burger King franchise portends our economic take-off? Now don’t get your Eyewitness wrong…he appreciates the symbolism of “first world” burgers.
But wouldn’t increased obesity slow our take-off?

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