EYEWITNESS: Running… for PNC leadership


Well, well, well! The horses for the PNC sweepstakes are coming into the starting gate! As of now, we have three contestants – Richard Van West-Charles, Aubrey Norton and Joseph Harmon. With all of them in their sixties, they’re a bunch of pretty ancient nags!! It does look like Granger’s sitting this out, so that leaves Volda Lawrence as the only one to perk up the motley threesome. But she’s also in her sixties, and has been around for donkey’s years.

Van West looks and sounds like a moderate, but he really has no base. They’ll all hear that he’s “Burnham’s son-in-law”, but that don’t cut no ice nowadays – if it ever did! Back in the day, he was dubbed “Baby Jesus” on account of his father-in-law being “God”!! Didn’t do him much good, and, for the longest while enjoying his sinecure at PAHO and dabbling with some Caribbean off-shore hospitals, he was out of sight; and so, out of mind.

His return to Guyana to be involved in the hustings didn’t work out so well within the PNC. He had to switch to the AFC to get into the race, and this mightn’t go down too well with the PNC loyalists. After all, the AFC’s name is now “mud” …which is under “dead meat”!! His tenure at GWI wouldn’t recommend him for the Presidency – too mundane and infra dig!! And then there were the accusations about him playing fast and loose with some oil importation! Nah! An “also ran” for sure.

Then comes Harmon – not exactly the most charismatic fella out there, but does he need charisma when he has the support of the incumbent leader and all their army pals who have gotten used to being movers and shakers?? No…your Eyewitness doesn’t think so. Granger also can call in his chips on all those young faces he sent to Parliament! They were MADE by him, and owe him big time. He went out on a limb for them when he teed off all the oldsters – like Volda – when he dissed them for MP-dom. If they get behind Harmon, he can play the elder statesman to sell a NEW PNC to the masses. In the race…for sure!
And then there is Norton. He might be the darling of the diaspora and the hardliners, but first he has to get past Volda, who’s already whipped him in the Georgetown district several times. And Georgetown will be the dominant faction at Congress. Then he’s teed off all the other big ones, like Corbin and Granger. An “also ran”!!

Volda came off well in West Berbice. So, it’s Harmon vs Volda. And off they go!!

…the country

Some heavyweight WI academics bemoaned what they called the “judicialization” of our Politics. Meaning that with all our constitutional changes and changes in the political system, our politicians still have to resort to the Courts to settle their problems. Well, honestly, your Eyewitness sees nothing wrong with that. After all, this is part and parcel of their mandate that was constitutionally conferred – the Courts settle disputes between the political parties in terms of their constitutional soundness.

Your Eyewitness is a political cynic…politicians will never “do the right thing” when they see an opportunity to subvert them. And those academics put their finger on what’s really the problem in the judiciary when they pointed out the number of times our Court of Appeal had to be “corrected” by the CCJ? Imagine these worthies couldn’t figure out that 33 was greater than 32!!

But the bright light they identified was our CJ. Really, Guyana can be proud that we have someone in the bench who knows right from wrong!!

Simple as that!!

…on empty

We all saw the glitz and glamour of Dubai, and were suitably overwhelmed. Imagine building all of that in half-a-century. But also imagine it was all done with dirt-cheap labour from India and Pakistan.

Whom you never see!!