Eyewitness: Raising the temperature…

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…in Essequibo

Well, well, well!! Used to be a time when Berbice and Essequibo were far from the madding crowd of brick throwing and burning bridges literally and figuratively – but your Eyewitness guesses “the times they are a changin’”!! Last year, it was West Berbice exploding in protests after the Henry cousins were murdered in the backlands. It did take some gasoline to be poured by Granger and Harmon, but the flammability of the material had to been there, ain’t so? The gruesomeness of the murders was just too much for anyone to take, even in what evidently were very close-knit communities across the political divide.

They were like how Guyana was before the riots of the sixties – but then, those formerly close-knit communities also descended into barbarism. On both sides, let’s not quibble about that. There’s enough blame to go around many times, so there’s no need to embellish. The lessons are the same from so many countries around that descended into ethnic hostilities after sometimes hundreds of years of living peacefully with each other. Don’t mess around!! In this day of “identity politics”, folks see their fates as inextricably linked with “their” group, and it doesn’t take much to ignite a spark!

But the protests in Essequibo are a horse of a completely different colour. While we can urge one and all to await a professional investigation in the shooting of that young businessman Orin Boston by a SWAT team, there are enough uncontested facts to raise serious concerns. Why, in this day and age, does a SWAT team have to kick down doors to get at citizens without warning?? Is that the Standard Operating Procedure? Forget about warrants…there doesn’t seem to have been any. From what we’re told, the Police had evidence of some serious crimes that were either committed or were to be committed on the Coast.

But what about the “knock and announce” rule, before breaking doors? Was there clear evidence that some crime was going to be committed if the Police didn’t break in? Was some evidence going to be destroyed?? We’ll find out quickly, your Eyewitness hopes.
We’re now told that some other doors were kicked down in the area…what’s going on? Guyanese experienced the terrifying phenomenon of “kick-down-the-door” banditry some years ago. These things remain in people’s minds!!

Anyhow, we must compliment the TOP COP and the Crime Chief for rushing over to the Coast to commiserate with the family, and assure them and the nation that there will be an impartial inquiry into the circumstances under which young Orin was killed.
It was sad the PNC invoked old killings. We don’t need to pour gasoline again.

…on COVID hesitancy

It does seem that this COVID hesitancy will be with us as long as the virus will…which is to say, forever. Let’s face it, folks…from what we’re seeing, this COVID virus might just become the new “flu”. Did you realise that, according to the WHO, about 250,000 to 500,000 folks die annually from the “common” flu?? That’s right…it’s been around so long it’s common. Now, God knows, your Eyewitness isn’t making light of the COVID pandemic; he’s lost enough friends to it for that.

But what he now realises is that whatever method we use to fight the COVID pandemic, it’s going to take vaccines PLUS the protocols we’re now familiar with, of wearing masks, washing hands, coughing into elbows and keeping at more than six feet away from each other. But if you think it’s difficult to get people to vaccinate…think about getting them to follow those rules!!
Not to mention the need for periodic lockdowns to contain local “hotspots”.

…on teachers

Teachers are in an unenviable position. Most of them are just trying to educate our young. They need to be caught in a buzzsaw between the PNC’s GTU and the MoE like a hole in the head!!